It’s a question many have pondered in this area: is solar power possible in the U.P.? The Keweenaw Research Center thinks so.

For three years, researchers and students from Michigan Tech have been testing solar panels and their ability to absorb sunlight, even in the roughest conditions. The key in these experiments is to find out which angles are the best to maximize the amount of solar energy while getting the snow that accumulates to slide off.

Keweenaw Research Center executive director Jay Meldrum says it’s a viable option that can lead to a world free of electricity costs. “It becomes affordable and once the investment is paid for and it lasts for 25-plus years, then it literally is free power,” Meldrum said.

Meldrum says all data pertaining to the panels is readily available on the Keweenaw Research Center’s website.