University of Brighton

We were selected after a mini-tender just prior to Christmas 2015 to install solar PV on three buildings at Brighton university’s campus at Falmer; The Library, Westlain building, and Mayfield House.

A large part of the tender assessment was the ability to mobilise a team in very short timescales whilst not compromising health and safety and quality.

In fact it was essential that all systems were installed, commissioned and registered before the January 15th 2016 feed in tariff reduction.

We had full install teams working between Christmas and new year and had all three buildings up and running by the 12th January.

Falmer Library – A 39.52 kWp photovoltaic system was installed onto the pitch tiled roof of the Library building. The Samil inverters were mounted in the roof level plant room and a local connection was made into an existing 3 phase distribution board.

Westlain House – A 35.88 kWp system was installed across the tiled roof pitch.

Samil inverters were mounted on the adjacent flat roof area on a bespoke unistrut framework and were connected into a local 3 phase distribution board.

Mayfield House – A 96.98 kWp system was installed on the standing seam metal roof. Inverters were installed in the loft void with the AC cable being fed down an existing riser before connecting into the main board.


On the back of the Falmer Project we were given the opportunity to work with Brighton Energy Co-op on the Varley Halls of Residence for Brighton University. This project was for 60kWp spread across the roofs of seven accommodation blocks. Each block had single phase supplies to each floor, so careful design and installation had to be observed to ensure phase balance was maintained and did not cause any problems across the site as a whole.

Each block had between 24 and 36 panels on, and had two Solis single phase inverters between 3 and 5 kW in size.

As we had a 2 week window to install the systems so as not to interfere with the University schedule, we operated two distinct teams, one panel fitting and one electrical, with two scaffold teams on site (one erecting and one dismantling). This set up enabled us to quickly move around the site commissioning and clearing as we went, which meant as the final system was commissioned all that was left was the final scaffold to strike, and we completed two days ahead of schedule.


“We have been extremely impressed by Ecosphere Renewables. They carried out an excellent PV installation, exposed to the harsh elements, to a ridiculously tight (FiT) deadline. We went out to tender on the 18th December, issued our contract on the 23rd, and I met representatives from Ecosphere and walked then round site on Xmas eve. The scaffolders arrived on the 27th December, and the installers from Ecosphere on the 28th. They worked every day (including weekends) in order to meet our deadline for installation on the 12th January. The guys on site were professional, dedicated, flexible and hardworking, and thought outside the box, so were able to identify alternative wiring options so that we were able to connect up the PV without requiring the major 4+ hour power shutdown which we’d previously envisaged. We are now looking at the possibility of further PV installations at Brighton.”

Abigail Dombey, University of Brighton Environmental Manager
  • Location: Brighton
  • System Size: 232 kWp Total
  • Panel Model: Winaico 260W
  • Inverter Model: Samil and Solis
  • Annual Output: 237,870 kWh/a
  • Annual CO2 Savings: 125,833 kg CO2/a

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