MADISON, Wis. – City of Madison electricians joined a team to help install a solar electrical system in Puerto Rico. 

Twelve people participated in the program, including six municipal employees and six local tech college students. The crew left for Purerto Rico on March 7 and stayed for a full week. While they were there, they helped install a solar energy panel system on the roof of the Candelaria Community Center.

Officials said the center is important to the community because it’s one of the few city buildings there were not flooded during Hurricane Maria. During the storm, it was used as a shelter and had resources like emergency supplies, food and water. 

The founders of the Couillard Solar Foundation donated $25,000 to make the trip possible. North Wind Renewable Energy Cooperative in Steven Point provided equipment design and logistical support. The city of Madison provided time, transportation and some room and board. 

Officials said the project was successful. The group installed an 8.4 kW solar system on the community center and adjacent Emergency Management Office to provide enough power to operate their radios, computers and recharge cellphones.

Part of the sucess was also in training 12 people on how to install solar electric modules. 

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