Agua Caliente Solar Project
|Agua Caliente Solar Project|
|Location||Yuma County, Arizona|
|Construction cost||$1.8 billion|
|Site area||2,400 acres|
|Annual generation||626.219 GWh|
The Agua Caliente Solar Project is the world's largest photovoltaic solar generating facility, currently being built in Yuma County, Arizona using thin film solar panels manufactured by First Solar. The project is expected to be completed in 2014, when it will reach an installed capacity of 397 MWp.
39 MW was online as of December 2011 and 100 MW was completed as of April 2012. 200 MW was completed as of July 2012, and 247 MW in August 2012, when the 10th section was completed. The addition of more panels has halted until 2013, with crates of panels covered to protect them. Peak output of the installed panels has reached as high as 251.3 MW.
In August 2011, the Department of Energy finalized a $967 million loan guarantee for the project. The project sponsor, NRG Solar, estimates the photovoltaic generation facility will fund approximately 400 construction jobs and 16 full-time operating jobs, and will be one of the largest plants of its kind in the world when completed. The power produced will be sold to PG&E (Pacific Gas & Electric) in California in a 25 year Power Purchase Agreement.
The Series 3 thin film panels use CdS/CdTe, and are rated from 75 watts to 77 watts each, and are mounted at a fixed tilt angle. 20,940 are connected in each array, rated at 1.26 MW AC, and over 400 SMA 720CP inverters are used. Two inverters are connected to each array.
In February 2012, Agua Caliente competed in the Excellence in Renewable Energy Awards and won Project of the Year Award.
- "Agua Caliente Solar Project". CleanEnergy Action Project. Retrieved June 17, 2013.
- "World's Largest Operational Solar PV Project, Agua Caliente, Achieves 250 Megawatts of Grid-Connected Power" (Press release). Tempe, Arizona: First Solar. September 10, 2012. Retrieved June 17, 2013.
- "Excellence in Renewable Energy Awards Winners: Project of the Year and Readers' Choice". Renewable Energy World. 17 February 2012.
- Cheyney, Tom (October 14, 2011). "Utility-scale with a capital ‘U’: First Solar’s Agua Caliente PV project pushes toward initial power". PVTech.
- "Arizona project reaches 100MW mark". UPI. 26 April 2012.
- Katie Fehrenbacher (16 July 2012). "Huge Arizona solar panel farm now 2/3 completed".
- Martin, Christopher; Doom, Justin (August 30, 2012). "First Solar Stops Installation at Agua Caliente Project". Bloomberg. Retrieved June 17, 2013.
- "Department of Energy Finalizes a $967 Million Loan Guarantee to Support the Agua Caliente Solar Project". Energy.gov. August 5, 2011.
- "First Solar® FS Series 3™ PV Module" (PDF). First Solar.[dead link]
- Olson, Syanne (March 7, 2012). "SMA tapped to deliver more than 400 inverters for Agua Caliente solar project". PVTech. Retrieved June 17, 2013.
- Energy Information Administration. "Agua Caliente Solar Project, Monthly". Electricity Data Browser. Retrieved October 9, 2013.