The Sonic restaurant chain is known for its tasty hamburgers, delicious drinks and old-fashioned service. One Sonic Drive-In in Oregon is known in its community for something else: The canopy at the Wilsonville Sonic is embedded with solar panels.
Sonic's drive-in restaurants allow restaurant-goers to order their meals and park while they wait for them to be delivered. Jess Wetsel, the owner of the Wilsonville Sonic, told the Wilsonville Spokesman that the solar panel system was the perfect addition to the canopy. "Turns out they are almost the perfect angle for solar panels," he said. "Normally they have to put in brackets to get them to the right angle, but the pitch of the roof is almost the same. It saved some cost of putting them in."
Wetsel added a 9.9-kilowatt system to the car canopy, with 45 individual panels installed. He affirmed there will be a ribbon cutting ceremony Friday to celebrate the solar panel array. "We made the decision to put it in because solar power fits in to our desire to be community oriented and it's part of our mission statement to be a good citizen," he asserted.
Wetsel said that aside from reducing the restaurant's carbon gas emissions, it will also save roughly $6,700 annually in electricity costs.