ONE of the largest roof-top solar arrays in the UK is to be built on the roof of the MET Office in Exeter.

The Met Office has awarded the contract to design and install a 250 kW solar PV array to SunGift Solar.

The huge array will stretch across the roof of the Met Office’s 150 metre long Energy Centre. It includes 1,000 solar PV panels and will generate enough green electricity to meet the demand from one of the Met Office’s powerful new supercomputers.

Gareth Walton, business development manager of Exeter-based SunGift, said: “The Met Office is a world leader in weather and climate services, so it’s great news we were chosen from the tender process to carry out this prestigious job.

“Our emphasis has always been on providing bespoke solutions that are at the cutting edge of technology, so we’re proud of the fact that our high level of technical knowledge and experience has been recognised.”

The 250 kW array will generate 221,000 kW hours of electricity per year – enough to power the equivalent of 67 houses – and will save about 116 tonnes of C02 per year. The system will be linked to the Met Office’s sophisticated Electricity Management System, enabling up-to-the-minute monitoring of the panels’ performance.