View Full Version : Solar at Infineon Raceway

06 August 2011, 0856
In my newspaper today was an interesting article by Jim Motavalli of the Mother Nature Network discussing how Infineon Raceway is going “green”. Infineon has installed 1,652 Panasonic/Sanyo solar panels within their facility that are providing 353 kW, or 41% of the track’s power requirements. These solar panels came on line last June.

In addition to the solar power, Infineon has 3,000 sheep grazing around the track keeping the grass and weeds mowed. They also have 15 owl boxes (presumably containing some owls) to keep their rodent population under control. They are also using recycled paper in the viewing suites, biodegradable wraps at the concession stands, water-free urinals and a “clean air” program that plants 10 tress every time the green flag drops.

The article mentions that it is going to be a while before NASCAR features electric car races, though. While one of the NASCAR drivers admits that electric cars are fast, he also says that they “don’t make enough noise for red-blooded Americans to get excited”.

Another issue is the limited range of electric vehicles. However, a new Europe-based series, the EV Cup, is coming to California this year for some races that are uniquely suited to the EV’s capabilities.

The article says that solar racetracks are a growth industry. Pocono Raceway in PA has installed a 25-acre, $16 million solar farm that will generate 3 to 4 million kWh of electricity annually to power all of their race operations and it will even sell power back to the grid. (Infineon will do the same at times.)

The solar panels at Infineon are supposed to save 34,000 barrels of oil over 30 years. Later in the summer, Infineon will host an Accelerating Sustainable Performance Summit at Sonoma. The article also mentions that Zero-emission electric motorcycle races have been hosted at Infineon as part of the TTXGP U.S. Championships.