FireKeepers Hotel Solar Panels

The solar panels project will not only power heated water for the swimming pool, laundry facility and drinking water for the hotel, but also is providing training in solar installation work for eight tribal members of the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi.

The project is slated to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2012, says Tony Day, General Manager, Skasgé Power LLC.

Skasgé Power LLC earlier this year finished a power panel system on the Pine Creek Indian Reservation in Athens, Mich. It provides electricity and hot water to the tribe’s Community Center, the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi’s Health Department and its Public Works building.

Day says in April the power panel system proved it could heat 350 gallons of hot water to a temp of 160 degrees in 10 minutes using only the power required to power a 200-watt light bulb.

With the completion of the system at Pine Creek attention became focused on the panels for the FireKeepers Hotel. The power created is expected to save $250,000 from its electric bill. It also should be possible to create enough power to sell some back to Consumers Energy, Day says.

The project was made possible in part through a $60,000 grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation to Skasgé Power, LLC. The funds were to pay for training and certification of those participating in the apprenticeship program.

Skasgé Power has 11 employees, nine of which are tribal members.Enter a description of the project.