Show people are renowned for innovating modern engineering, such as the locomotive traction engine. With features including a dynamo that powered hundreds of dazzling lights, drawing in the crowds. People loved the engines and still do today, flocking to steam rallies to see them. It was like a magic trick back then and unbelievable to most.
In keeping with tradition it is only right that modern Show people pioneer future engineering, such as solar power. The technology is improving rapidly, providing quiet, non-polluting and fuel-less energy. People are aware of solar power but still need to be convinced about it's reliability in replacing conventional energy sources. When installed properly it can also be magic and no one can believe the sun's power can be harnessed so instantly.
A solar system is more expensive than a generator, especially kW for kW. But there are no fuel costs and a good system should be fairly maintenance free. There is always the option to have it automatically backed up by a smaller generator, but a good system will handle spikes in demand far better than a conventional generator, so if sized correctly should be all you need.
Another issue is space, firstly you need space for the brain of the system, a charge controller, an inverter and breakers/fuses/trips. Secondly you need space and weight capacity for batteries, the more batteries the more power storage. Thirdly you need space for solar panels, the more panels the more instantaneous power.
If you already drive a big rig around then some extra weight shouldn't matter. The 'brain' and the batteries can easily fit into the size of a 5-10kW generator. But the panels need more creativity...and engineering. A few can be mounted on van/truck roof's, but more will require some clever thinking, incorporating the space the show has available.
For lighting LEDs come in all colours and fittings. They can be powered on AC 240V or on separate DC 12 or 24V. Again the initial expense is more than conventional light bulbs but they use very little power making them efficient for solar.
On our website are information flyers about simple solar systems you can size yourself. Or we can size and install mobile systems for you. Have a look at our website at www.resourceliving.org where you can see pictures of our mobile solar generator and get contact details.