Renewable Energy

Brandeis has three rooftop solar photovoltaic installations, one solar thermal installation and one geothermal system on campus.

Solar PV Installations

Solar photovoltaic is a technology that converts sunlight (solar radiation) into direct current electricity by using semiconductors. When the sun hits the semiconductor within the PV cell, electrons are freed and form an electric current. Solar PV technology is generally employed on a panel.

Brandeis' PV installations are on Goldfarb Library, the Gosman Sports and Convocation Center and Skyline Residence Hall. Together, these systems generate over 320,000 kWh of electricity per year. Follow the links below to view real-time data on their electricity production.

Solar Thermal Installation

Solar thermal systems capture the heat energy from the sun and use it to help heat water used in a home or building. This is different from photovoltaic solar panels, which directly convert the sun’s radiation to electricity.

The Charles River Apartments is home to Brandeis' solar hot water system, which displaces approximately 8,300 gallons of fuel oil per year. Watch a video about the system.

two rows of blue solar thermal panels on a rooftop

Solar Thermal System at Charles River Apartments (2:23)

Geothermal System

Skyline's geothermal system takes advantage of the earth’s constant underground temperature to provide heating, cooling and hot water to the building. The geothermal system is comprised of forty closed-loop, 500-foot-deep wells that circulate fluid deep underground, where the temperature is always around 55°F. Through this system, combined with the building's rooftop solar panels and ultra-efficient building design, Skyline uses 30% less energy than a typical residence hall.