Domaine Carneros Powers 40% of its Facility with SunPower

The installation of photovoltaic panels at our brand new Pinot Noir facility marks a significant milestone in Domaine Carneros’ continuing efforts to achieve sustainability in the production of premium wines. The SunPower solar electric system helps us to generate clean energy at our winery as well as greatly conserve our energy resources.”

– Eileen Crane, President, Domaine Carneros


Domaine Carneros, established in 1987, is a joint venture of Champagne Taittinger of France and Kobrand Corporation. Headed by President and Winemaker Eileen Crane, Domaine Carneros is one of the few wineries producing California sparkling wine made exclusively from Carneros grapes. Recently, Domaine Carneros completed a new 23,500 square foot Pinot Noir facility designed to complement the winery’s18th century-style chateau.


Domaine Carneros had a vision of creating a green building at the vineyard’s new Pinot Noir winery—the first-ever facility in the Carneros appellation to be fully dedicated to the production of Pinot Noir. Keenly interested in deploying reliable renewable resources and energy conservation techniques to meet its sustainable building goals, Domaine Carneros also sought a cost-effective solution to reduce the operating costs associated with providing a reliable electricity supply to its new facility.


Domaine Carneros determined that solar technology benefits both the company and the surrounding community. It allows the winery to generate its own electricity cost-effectively, and helps increase the stability of the region’s energy supply as well by reducing the utility grid’s transmission constraints. By deploying solar power, Domaine Carneros generates electricity to help offset peak demand utility rates, especially during summer months when electricity is most expensive.

Covering 15,700 square feet, the 196 kW solar electric system installed at Domaine Carneros provides up to 40% of the winery’s electricity – and powers production equipment, air conditioning, refrigeration and other operations at the facility.

Domaine Carneros’ 196 kW solar system makes innovative use of an unused asset––the facility’s roof –– to generate power. In addition to integrating solar power, the winery also incorporated a wide range of energy efficiency measures, such as building into the hillside, installing skylights and using heavy insulation.

Rooftop System Description

The solar electric system installed on the Domaine Carneros Pinot Noir facility is a lightweight building-integrated photovoltaic roofing system that is installed over an existing waterproof membrane. This system consists of 1,080 SunPower modules, each with a maximum DC rating of 190 watts.

SunPower PowerGuard® solar roof tiles fit together with interlocking tongue-and groove side surfaces that enable them to resist wind uplifts without penetrations.In addition to generating electricity, SunPower’s solar roof system provides thermal insulation and protects the roof membrane from harsh UV rays and thermal degradation. These benefits result in decreased heating and cooling energy costs and extended roof tile.

Project Overview

Location:    Napa, CA
Completed:    March 2006
System Peak Capacity:    196 kW
PV Surface Area:    15,700 square feet
Solar Electric Tiles:    1,080
Products:    SunPower PowerGuard®

  • Generates enough solar energy to power over 190 homes
  • Reduces energy and operating costs
  • Will reduce CO2 emissions by 2,400 tons over 30 years, which is equivalent to planting almost 700 acres of trees, or not driving 6 million miles on California roadways