Martin Automatic, the global supplier of splicing and rewinding systems, has announced a recent investment in renewable energy at its headquarters in Rockford, IL, with the implementation of a solar panel project that will help power its manufacturing center.
The solar initiative had been under evaluation for several years culminating in roof modifications on its 170,000 sq ft facility, a white silicone reflective coating being applied, and a total of 2800 solar panels being installed in three different fixed planes to harness the sun’s light most efficiently. The 1.2-megawatt system, fully functional since 2022, represents one of the largest building solar installations in northern Illinois.
The initial results indicate savings greater than were originally projected, with the company reporting a reduction in electricity costs of more than 75% from the same period last year. Purchasing Director Chris Beard, who helped oversee the project, described it as “the meter running backwards.” Excess electricity generated from the panels is returned to the local power company as part of a net metering program to offset costs during cloudier periods.
Jonathan Bauch, Martin’s CFO, said: “The renewable energy aspect is significant. We looked at this project as we do other capital outlays to be sure it would give us a return on our investment that would make us more efficient and positioned for greater success”. Bauch cited similar examples of recent investments, such as energy-efficient LED lighting installations for the factory and offices as well as high-end automated machining centers and streamlined IT systems.
Bauch concluded, “Martin is the leader in the industries we serve because our automation technology helps our customers realize a high return on their investment. And like our new solar project, those investments result in greater savings, less waste, and more sustainability”.
The solar panel installation atop Martin Automatic’s headquarters is one of the largest installations of its kind in northern Illinois.