The Road to Solar Power

Thysse’s solar panels are live.

One glance at our new facility and it’s apparent that we’re invested in solar for the long haul. The panels take up the majority of our production facility’s rooftop, and glimmer with the slightest hint of sunlight. The spectacular team at Arch Electric helped us get them up and running in the fall, and we couldn’t be happier with the result. The layout, track install, and fastening of the panels took about 7 weeks, and as of November 24, 2020, the panels were live and Thysse began officially drawing solar power from our own grid.

See more in our joint press release here.

But let’s take a step back and walk through what it took to get to this point. Interest in creating a more sustainable building, including solar panels, has been a part of the vision for this campus from the beginning. As various components of the project came together, it was not a question of “if” solar would be installed, but “when?” and “how?” especially as COVID turned many plans around. When we moved into the building in late July, it was unknown when we would be able to implement them into the roof of the structure.

To plan accordingly and install solar properly, Thysse needed multiple partners in the renewable energy industry. In mid 2019, Thysse began working with Legacy Solar Cooperative to find a way to replace some of our conventional energy with clean power. Legacy Solar Cooperative is a Wisconsin-based co-op that provides solar products/services. The co-op is a natural partner for Thysse in this effort, as their intent is to bring people together to support solar and other clean energy initiatives.

The co-op does not endorse every solar project in Wisconsin, they require that co-op support be reserved for projects that will last a minimum of 40 years, giving dual meaning to the term “sustainable energy.”

In August of 2020, Thysse was notified that the USDA would be awarding us a grant through the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP). The REAP program assists businesses pursuing projects relating to energy audits and renewable energy development by providing grants to fund a portion of the projects. REAP also supports rural and small business by funding purchases and installs of renewable energy systems to make energy efficiency improvements.

With the USDA assistance, Thysse began work with our install partner, Arch Electric, to expand our emphasis on renewable energy by creating an install plan for the approved solar panels. Arch Electric specializes in energy storage solutions, utility solar, commercial/industrial solar and storage, along with operations and maintenance services. The company is considered the largest vertical provider of solar in Wisconsin and its mission is to educate, inspire, and power current and future generations to choose a clean, sustainable form of energy.

Arch Electric installed a whopping 850 panels which are expected to produce approximately 350,000 kWh annually.

The solar panels that have been installed on the roof are defined as by bi-facial, photovoltaic PV panels. These specific panels are considered an innovation in the solar industry, because while they can generate power directly from the sun, they can also generate indirectly from reflected light. This improvement allows panels to produce 10 – 20% more power and helps the panels shed snow faster in the winter, both allowing for increased energy absorption. We can attest to this final fact, as Thysse is still drawing power daily, even in the dead of winter. All of our panels remain clear, while many other rooftops are still covered in about 10” of snow.

We now have a live feed of our daily production and usage over at Solar Edge, and will soon have a direct feed on our site’s (currently-under-construction) sustainability page!

Let’s break down some of that unfamiliar terminology. In the most basic setup, solar panels are installed on a rack system on the roof to have greatest sun exposure potential, and this physical setup is combined with an inverter system to generate electricity for a facility. Depending on the amount of power generated, these panels can offset some or all of the necessary electricity consumption for the building, reducing the reliance on the city grid. During peak sun exposure and production for our facility, we’re covering about half of our energy needs with power drawn from our solar panels. In periods of lower energy usage, our panels are producing more energy than we’re consuming! During periods of non-activity/power usage, like weekends and holidays, our excess power goes back to the city’s grid.

If that sounds like an impressive setup, it is! Put into concrete numbers: our current facility is triple the size of our previous building, the Netherwood location, and uses roughly the same amount of electricity. That’s already cause for celebration, however, the specific solar panel set up at Thysse will produce the clean energy equivalent of planting over 6,500 trees.

That means we’re sequestering over half a million pounds of CO2 every year!

As Thysse has grown, we’ve continued to evolve our machinery and processes to be more efficient and sustainable both for the environment and for the longevity of the business. The panels are a critical step toward offsetting our emissions footprint and producing our own clean power continue the Thysse legacy of innovation and focus on our people.

Thysse Unveils New Campus and New Capabilities.

New Address, Same Thysse Culture.

Monday, July 27 marked the next chapter in the Thysse legacy. The company opened the doors on its new headquarters, a 95,500 square-foot building in Oregon, WI. The new campus, situated just a stone’s throw from the previous Netherwood location, is the third expansion in seven years to support Thysse’s enhanced services and growing lines of business.

The building itself is as functional as it is visually impressive; featuring 2 glass lined stories and triple the production space. The new location brings together a full in-house design suite for Thysse’s Experiential Graphic Design team, moves all production, specialty graphics, and fulfillment services to a single site, creating greater efficiencies for Thysse’s customers, and enhances the close team culture for its employees. For President Jason Thysse, this is the real measure of success,

“Since my grandfather started Thysse in 1941, this company has always been about the people. We designed the new campus with both client and employee needs in mind, and the result we’ve realized with the team of Thysse architects, designers, and assistance from OPN Architects is a dream come true. We are very excited for this next chapter in Thysse’s story!”

Fleet of Thysse delivery trucks at new campus

Director of Operations, Nick Brevik knows that the new campus will start showing a return on investment almost immediately,

“The move to a larger space that can house all our services in one location minimizes our logistical inefficiencies. We’ll be able to reduce travel time, particularly in fulfillment, and we’re able to increase our service offerings, adding on foil stamping and embossing capabilities starting in August. The bigger production space allowed us to bring in a larger format and faster press, as well as the prepress workflow to support it, effectively doubling our offset printing rate. The move also increased fulfillment storage by 30%. Thysse has always looked for the best way to meet our customers’ current needs, while simultaneously planning for their future; this move is a continuation on that promise.”  

Thysse’s new address, as of July 27th, is 780 Cusick Parkway, Oregon, WI 53575.

Production space in Thysse's new campus

Although the building was completed for Thysse, it wasn’t done alone. The project had many partners involved including: The Village of Oregon, Oregon Community Bank, Wisconsin Business Development, OPN Architects, Newcomb Construction, and Thysse’s very own Experiential Design Team. Thank you for your support and assistance along this journey!

To stay up to date with what’s happening at Thysse, stay tuned on our social channels and at www.thysse.com.

Facebook | Twitter | Linkedin | Instagram

For more information, contact Jen Braga, Thysse, at 608.249.6951.

No Handshakes? No Problem.

Handshakes are so… last year. 

Historically, the act of shaking another person’s hand is a greeting known to spread peace, friendliness and overall goodwill. Unfortunately, the handshake is also a great way to spread germs. In the midst of a highly contagious virus outbreak, avoiding physical contact with others is more important than ever. Fortunately for you, Team Thysse has created a list of nine handshake alternatives to use the next time you’re in need of a touch-free greeting. 

1. The Nod

Cool people have already been doing this for years. You may want to practice this one in the mirror a few times to perfect the momentum of the upswing. Bonus points if you say “sup” while doing it.

Gif of man doing the nod
VIA Giphy

2. The Vulcan Salute

Even if you’re not a Star Trek fan, you’re probably familiar with this greeting. It means “live long and prosper,” which is quite fitting for these uncertain times.

Spock from Star Trek doing the Vulcan Salute
VIA NBC

3. Air Five

Also sometimes known as the Jim and Pam high five. No germs involved.

Gif of Jim and Pam from The Office doing an air high five
VIA Giphy

4. Namaste

A subtle bow with palms pressed together. It simply means “I bow to you.” If Khloe can do it, so can you.

Gif of Kourtney Kardashian doing a namaste bow
VIA Giphy

5. The Fake Shake

Go in for the classic handshake, then “SIKE!” We advise not to use this one during a job interview.

Gif of man doing a fake handshake
VIA Giphy

6. Blow a Kiss

Real kisses are definitely off limits during a pandemic, but fake kisses can be just as sweet. We also do not recommend using this one during an interview.

Gif of Ham from The Sandlot blowing a kiss
VIA Giphy

7. Air Hug

An air hug is a simple and effective way to show affection without touching. Non-huggers rejoice.

Two women air hugging from a distance
VIA Getty

8. Point and Wink

This one is pretty self-explanatory. Something about the added hand gesture makes it so much better than just your average wink.

Gif of a man doing the point and wink
VIA Giphy

And last but not least…

9. Finger Guns

You heard it here first. Coronavirus made finger guns cool.

Gif of Wheeler from Red Oaks doing finger guns
VIA Giphy

All jokes aside, stay safe out there.

Quarantine 2020: What to Watch Next

It’s safe to say we could all probably use a good show to binge right now. We asked our team, “If you could only watch one thing during quarantine, what would it be?” The responses did not disappoint. Well, most of them didn’t… Take a look at what Team Thysse is watching and start adding to your queue. 

1. Ozark (Netflix)

This was our most popular response. A must watch.

Ozark gif
VIA Giphy

2. Schitt’s Creek (Netflix)

Arguably the best sitcom ever created.  

Schitt's Creek gif
VIA Giphy

3. The Morning Show (Apple TV+)

It’s not actually a morning news show. 

The Morning Show
VIA Good Housekeeping

4. The Office (Netflix)

A classic. 

The Office gif
VIA Giphy

5. Killing Eve (Hulu)

The description has the words “spy” and “assassin” in it. 

Killing Eve
VIA Vox

6. Homeland (Hulu, Showtime)

An edge-of-your-seat thriller.

Homeland
VIA IMDB

7. Rick and Morty (Hulu)

An animated series about a mad scientist and his grandson.  

Rick and Morty gif
VIA Giphy

8. The Food Network (The Food Network)

Literally anything on the Food Network. You can’t go wrong. 

The Food Network gif
VIA Giphy

9. Impractical Jokers (TruTV)

Four best friends embarrass each other through a series of outrageous dares.

Impractical Jokers gif
VIA Giphy

10. Doctor Who (BBC America)

Aliens, planets, and time travel, oh my!

Doctor Who
VIA Mental Floss

11. CSI (Hulu)

There are 337 episodes. Good luck. 

CSI
VIA The Atlantic

12. Investigation Discovery (Investigation Discovery)

Get your true crime fix.

Investigation Discovery
VIA ID

13. The Ranch (Netflix)

Ashton Kutcher and Danny Masterson are back at it.

The Ranch gif
VIA Giphy

14. Barnaby Jones (You might have to find VHS tapes for this one)

A silver-topped sleuth comes out of retirement to solve his son’s murder. 

Barnaby Jones
VIA Nostalgia Central

15. The Hallmark Channel

No comment.

Hallmark Channel Dolly Parton gif
VIA Giphy