Siemens powers world’s first solar ski lift

10 July 2012 (Last Updated July 10th, 2012 18:30)

Siemens has provided technology to power the world's first solar ski lift located in the town of Tenna, Grisons, Switzerland.

Siemens

Siemens has provided technology to power the world's first solar ski lift located in the town of Tenna, Grisons, Switzerland.

Using a combination of a photovoltaic system and automation, the existing 40-year old, 460m-long drag lift underwent extensive restoration.

The completed lift now features 82 photovoltaic modules which are installed in a wing-shaped pattern between two ropes above the lift chairs.

Modules on the ski lift automatically rotate to track the position of the sun and tilt to remove snow build-up; in addition the solar wings offer skiers a heated seat.

The solar wing system will produce about 90,000 kWh of power per year, with two-thirds to be fed back into grid using Sinvert PVM string inverters.

The ski lift's operation is controlled by a Simatic S7 programmable logic controller, a fail-safe central processing unit and ET 200S modules.

An IM 151-3 interface module from the ET 200S distributed peripherals range will be used to exchange of data between the lift's mountain and valley stations.

A Simatic Touch Panel is used to operate the entire ski lift system which has been operational since late 2011.


Image: The solar wing system will produce about 90,000 kWh of power annually. Photo: courtesy of Siemens.