The First Federal Savings Bank in Mishawaka, IN is the first LEED certified bank branch in Indiana. In addition to the large 8.2 kW solar system on the roof, the building features eight inch thick walls made of Agriboard; a geothermal system that uses the earth and/or ground water as a source of heat in the winter and cooling power in the summer; wind turbines; a band of narrow windows along the top of the wall called clerestory windows to reduce electricity usage; permeable pavement that allows the movement of water and air through the paving material; and the roof is V-shaped to maximize the PV panels ability to collect sunlight. While the “green” building costs about eight to 10 percent more than a conventional building, the Bank Manager estimates reduced energy costs will pay off the initial difference within three to four years.
The 8.2 kW solar PV system includes 60 Uni-Solar PVL-136 modules, a flat, flexible laminate PV material. It feeds into two SMA-America Sunny Boy inverters. The energy production of both the solar PV and the wind system is monitored using Fat Spaniel Insight Views™, an interface that lets them publicly display their energy production and environmental stewardship.