For over 40 years, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) has owned and operated the Hancock Field Station in Central Oregon’s John Day River Valley, an area world-famous for its fossil-rich rock formations. Hancock Field Station functions as a full residential facility and as a base camp for trips to surrounding areas. Hancock’s outdoor educational experiences include the study of paleontology, geology, ecology, botany, zoology, archaeology, ornithology, and astronomy.
In July 2009, Tanner Creek Energy completed the design and installation of a 1 kW grid-tie roof-mounted photovoltaic system at OMSI’s Hancock Field Station. This system was made possible through the generous donation of more than $9,000 in goods and services by Tanner Creek Energy and several area companies and organizations who partnered to provide an excellent education opportunity for Hancock’s 3,500 annual camp participants.
This system produces approximately 1,070 kWh of electricity per year and will reduce the facility’s carbon impact by an average 1,800 lbs each year and by 20 tons over the 25 year life of the system. Perhaps more importantly, the solar panel installation will serve as a critical educational tool for all of the center’s outdoor school programming.