Day 1 – Tuesday, February 26, 2019



Introduction to Solar Energy
Paul Helstrom, Minnesota Power

This session will introduce solar technologies with a concentration on solar electric (photovoltaics). We will introduce the basics of various solar technologies and applications, the policies that are encouraging growth in the solar industry, and programs from around the region that are incentivizing deployment. Complementary technologies such as storage will be introduced, and current events affecting markets will also be explored.


Advancements In Solar Electric Design and Equipment
Christopher LaForge, Great Northern Solar

This session continues the review of the current state of development of solar electric design and the equipment changes that affect it. Each year the solar field evolves rapidly and with the changes comes additional design challenges. Understanding the best designs and what advantages each design brings to your clients keeps you in the game with the fast moving solar world. Keeping you up to date is the essence of this session so you can participate in this growing sector of the electrical design and construction field. Join us for an exciting time updating your knowledge base.


Renewable Energy(RE) Systems and the National Electrical Code (NEC)— Critical changes in 2019
Christopher LaForge, Great Northern Solar

The changes in the NEC for renewable energy and energy storage systems in 2019 require important and dramatic changes in RE system design. These changes will affect PV and other renewable energy systems design and require significant adjustments to how we approach systems. This session will review the changes for 2019 and present options for making designs compliant with these unusual developments in the 2017 code. Understanding these changes will be vital for all contractors and designers in the renewable energy and energy storage field.

This session will feature special guest speakers focusing on Minnesota’s new interconnection process standards known as MnDIP that are set to take effect in June of 2019.


The Many Scales of Solar Electricity and Energy Storage—301
Christopher LaForge, Great Northern Solar

Energy storage was the holy grail of renewable energy for decades and is definitely here to stay. Using energy storage will change businesses, utilities and energy systems greatly. With the advent of new players in the field and the ability to build storage into a wide range of electrical systems and retrofit existing systems, storage design is increasingly important. This session will review the current state of the technology, available equipment and explain how introducing storage into systems creates a wide range of profit and advantages to buildings along with a new level of resiliency to our systems.


Electric Cars are Coming! What Should Real Estate Owners and Building Industry Professionals Know About Charging?
Jukka Kukkonen, PlugInConnect

There are over a million plug-in vehicles (PEVs) driving on U.S. roads every day and, according to the latest survey from AAA, one in five Americans say they are likely to buy an electric car for their next new vehicle. Owners will charge their PEVs mainly at home, but PEV charging infrastructure will also be needed in other locations like workplaces. New areas of interest are corridor charging that enables long trips with EVs and destination charging that hotels, parks and other destinations can offer to attract more customers and visitors. For more information visit and