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Here at Widd Signs we’ve worked with Tapi, carpet and flooring specialists, for eight years, delivering signage to more than 140 of the company’s 177 UK sites.

Tapi signage by Widd Signs

Tapi signage by Widd Signs

Their latest project saw us team up with renewable energy specialists Marlec to incorporate solar-powered trough lights on a totem sign at Tapi’s new site in Bletchley.

Tapi approached us requesting an illuminated totem sign at the perimeter of the site but with no existing power supply, it would have cost thousands of pounds to install, not to mention the disruption to the existing car park surfaces and the running costs from rising energy bills.

We suggested solar power, providing a much more cost-effective option for Tapi, giving them a one-stop illumination solution. Once installed the totem sign is self-sustainable with no ongoing running costs and it strengthens the company’s sustainability credentials.

Getting the green light to deliver the solar-powered signage, we teamed up with Marlec, a UK company which boasts over 40 years of experience in delivering renewable energy projects.

Tapi solar powered totem sign by Widd Signs

Tapi solar powered totem sign by Widd Signs

The sign measures 3000mm x 1200mm with solar-powered aluminium LED trough lights to both sides of the sign. The framework for the sign is steel and the panels cladding the framework are in aluminium, a fully recyclable material, further supporting the project’s environmental credentials. Furthermore, the LEDs run at low voltage and so are much kinder to the environment. The solar power is stored in batteries inside the sign during the hours of daylight and timed to illuminate the sign when the ambient light dips, again reducing energy consumption.

The trough lights are manufactured from 70% recycled aluminium and boast further environmental credentials as they can be recycled again at the end of their life.

Whilst most people think of the UK as a rare place to generate solar energy, from our rarely seen sunshine, the solar panels convert solar energy from daylight into electricity which powers the trough lights and creates the perfectly illuminated totem sign as Tapi required.

Kevin Batham of Marlec advises how much power the solar system generates:

“The solar panel will take in 9.1 amps every hour. In the winter this will be up to seven hours and in the summer up to 14 hours. Each battery holds 20 amps, and each trough light gives out 3.3 amps per day in the winter. If this was a mains system, the trough lights would be using 24 amps per day in the winter.”

Tapi are very impressed with the potential reduction in running costs and sustainability benefits, with Tracey Skea, Tapi’s Business Development Director commenting “Look at that lovely Totem! We’re happy to support anything that reduces our electricity bill!”

Want to discuss sustainable signage for your business? Get in touch with us here.