SustainFloyd is moving forward to promote energy independence in a sustainable fashion. We have undertaken a project to design and build a mobile solar electric generator. This generator is a valuable tool in educating Floyd County adults and children about the benefits of renewable energy. In addition to the educational component, the generator will be used to power the Floyd Farmers Market, other outdoor events and provide power during power outages.

Solar Wagon
SustainFloyd board members Ricardo Brown (top) and Billy Weitzenfeld pose with our new trailer, soon to house a solar electric generator.

Rick Brown of SolShine Energy Alternatives, LLC, and Billy Weitzenfeld of AECP traveled to Boones Mill and purchased an American-made 6 x 12 dual-axle, enclosed trailer to house the components for the generator.

The mobile generator includes:

  • 6 245W multi-crystalline solar electric (PV) modules resulting in 1470W of generating power
  • a 3500W pure sine wave inverter
  • 21.6Kwh of battery storage
  • 120/240V AC Outlets
  • USB outlets for powering/charging portable electronics
Billy Weitzenfeld and Ricardo Brown show off the solar panels, which are being used to power the Farmers Market breakfast.

The generator was built by volunteers, with an eye towards educating/demonstrating its inner workings and spreading the word about alternative energy solutions. The building of the mobile generator was funded through a grant from USDA’s Rural Development program.

In 2016, with the help of a grant from The Community Foundation of the New River Valley signage was added to the Solar Voltzwagon, making it a vibrant voice to draw attention to the concept of solar energy. The signage, covering much of the outside of the trailer, helps to describe the workings of the mobile generator. To help get the message out the group offered the services of the Solar Voltzwagon at several local event, including Floyd Fest and the Chamber of Commerce Duck Race and made presentations at local schools.

In 2017 SustainFloyd volunteers will use components purchased through the CFNRV grant to integrate the Solar Voltzwagon into the Farmers Market electrical system, so that it will be able provide power to the farmers market and other events at the pavilion.

Voltz-Wagon Gallery

Photos from a Workday on the Solar Wagon November 2013

Early Photos of the Solar Wagon