Tuesday, June 23, 2015

First Solar Modules to Power Landmark 200MW Solar Photovoltaic Project in Dubai

DUBAI, UAE & TEMPE, AZ--(eSolarEnergyNews)--First Solar today announced that it has signed an agreement to supply its high performance photovoltaic (PV) modules to power the 200 megawatt (MW)AC second phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates.

Earlier this year, a consortium led by ACWA Power, a leading water and power developer, owner and operator based in Saudi Arabia, and TSK, a Spanish engineering and construction company, was selected by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) to develop, construct, own and operate the independent power project. According to the consortium, the project’s tariff of 5.84 USD cents per kilowatt-hour establishes a new global benchmark, reducing the cost of solar electricity by over 20 percent.

Significantly, the utility scale solar plant will be the largest facility of its kind in the Middle East when completed in early 2017. The plant will produce enough energy to power 30,000 average homes in the UAE and will displace over 469,650 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year. The project will be powered by over 2.36 million First Solar modules, compared to the 152,880 that were installed in the 13MWAC first phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. The plant will be built over an area of almost 4.5 million square meters, sufficient to cover as many as 100 soccer pitches.

Paddy Padmanathan, President and Chief Executive Officer, ACWA Power said, “ACWA Power’s commitment to deliver reliable and sustainable electricity at the lowest KwH tariff is reflected clearly in the win it has secured in the second phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. The technology we plan to implement has a proven advantage over conventional solar panels, delivering more annual energy for the same nameplate watts under the specific project conditions of the DEWA project. The organic performance growth program that First Solar is developing with their photovoltaic (PV) modules sets a benchmark in the PV industry, allowing us to benefit from a long-term reliable and durable power generation technology for projects of this scale.”

First Solar’s advanced PV modules have set the industry benchmark with over 10GW installed worldwide. Offering highly predictable energy in all climates and applications, the modules have been independently tested to pass accelerated life and stress tests beyond industry standards. With both a superior temperature coefficient and superior spectral response, they have been independently certified for reliable performance in high temperature, high humidity, extreme desert, and coastal environments.

“We are confident that this milestone project will establish a new benchmark for the reliable, affordable and sustainable generation of solar energy in the Middle East and around the world,” said Alfonso Targhetta, Procurement Managing Director and Board member, TSK. “By combining our world-class engineering and construction capabilities with First Solar’s high performance modules, this project will help define how utility scale PV plants are developed throughout the region and beyond.”

“This project’s impact on the global energy transition cannot be overstated. It has effectively driven down the cost of solar electricity, marking a new milestone in solar PV’s evolution as a mainstream energy resource,” said Ahmed S. Nada, Vice President and Region Executive for the Middle East at First Solar. “In this competitive environment, the decision to power the project with First Solar technology is testament to the ability of our high performance modules to reliably deliver energy, even in challenging operating conditions. In fact, with this win, First Solar will have earned the position of being the leading PV solutions provider in the Middle East, with a projected installed capacity of at least 270MW across the region by 2017.”

First Solar modules already power the 13MWAC first phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park and will be installed at the 52.5MWAC Shams Ma’an solar PV plant, currently under construction in Jordan and scheduled for completion in the second half of 2016.

NRG Renew to Develop 20MW Solar Energy Facility for Cisco

PRINCETON, N.J.--(eSolarEnergyNews)--Today, NRG Renew LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of NRG Energy, the country’s largest independent power producer, announced plans to develop a 20 megawatt (MW) solar energy facility that will generate clean, reliable solar power for delivery to Cisco’s San Jose headquarters. NRG Renew LLC will convert its NRG Solar Blythe II location, which is a 153-acre parcel that has been under development by NRG since 2010, into a solar installation that will help Cisco reach its goal of using renewable sources for at least 25 percent of its electricity needs by 2017. The project is scheduled to begin commercial operation by the end of 2016.

“Partnerships with industry leaders like Cisco are a key part of our vision for a clean energy future because they reinforce just how integral renewable energy is to the everyday nature of business,” said Tom Doyle, president and CEO of NRG Renew. “We are proud to work with Cisco to develop unique renewable solutions that help them reach their sustainability goals.”

“Enabling a diverse energy supply through low-carbon and renewable sources is key to meeting Cisco’s energy goals set forth in 2013. We thoroughly vetted potential solutions to help us realize our sustainability goals and are thrilled to collaborate with NRG to source renewable energy and increase our use of solar power. We look forward to exploring new, innovative ways to green the power we use,” said Ali Ahmed, Global Energy and Sustainability Leader, Cisco.

Electricity generated by the solar installation will be sold to Cisco under a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA), increasing Cisco headquarters’ total use of clean, emission-free electricity.

Located in the Sonoran Desert near the Arizona and California border, the NRG Solar Blythe II location receives plentiful sunshine: For nearly half the year, average temperatures reach 90°F or higher.1 The photovoltaic technology to be installed on-site requires no fuel and minimal water. The amount of emission-free energy generated is expected to be equivalent to the power needed to serve more than 14,000 homes and to prevent more than 102,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere annually, which is the equivalent of removing more than 21,000 cars from the road. During the construction period, the project is anticipated to create approximately 200 jobs.

Cisco has also installed approximately 2MW of solar at Cisco facilities over the past two years, including a new system in Boxborough, Mass. In addition to using electricity from certified low-carbon and renewable sources, Cisco is committed to reducing its energy consumption by improving the efficiency of its buildings. Beyond decreasing lighting and space conditioning energy, Cisco is focused on reducing power consumption in its engineering labs, the company’s largest consumers of energy and greatest source of greenhouse gas emissions. Cisco is also deploying new workplace designs to make better use of existing real estate and stimulate innovation through collaboration.

NRG and NRG Renew have already announced partnerships with several leading companies, including Unilever and Kaiser Permanente, to develop clean energy solutions. In addition, NRG has solar projects that are recently completed or under construction at MGM Resorts International, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc., Levi’s Stadium and the AmericanAirlines Arena home of the Miami HEAT, along with community solar projects in California, Colorado and Vermont.

IXYS Announces Smallest, Lightest Portable 5W Solar Battery Charger.

LEIDEN, NETHERLANDS & MILPITAS, CA--(eSolarEnergyNews)--IXYS Corporation (NASDAQ:IXYS), a manufacturer of power semiconductors and integrated circuits (ICs) for energy efficiency, power management, and motor control applications, today announced the availability of Solarade – the smallest and lightest 5W solar charger ideal for charging smart phones, tablets, and multi-media players.

Measuring 230mm in length, 160mm in width, and 17mm in height and weighing only 170g, the Solarade is highly portable and efficient. Its monocrystalline solar panel/module has a high efficiency of 20 percent and generates a 5V output at 1A. Designed with a 5V built-in regulator, it is powerful enough to charge at the same speed as a regular wall charger – it is able to fully charge the iPhone 5 in 1.5-2 hours.

The maximum charge rate is obtained when the solar panel is perpendicular to direct sunlight. A built-in sun-angle adjuster can be used to position the panel appropriately for the optimum exposure to sunlight. A red LED indicator light will come on when the Solarade is generating electrical power.

Through an integrated USB port, the Solarade can be connected to mobile devices, using a USB cable. This slim solar charger can be used to charge Apple iPhones, Samsung Galaxy phones and Tabs, iPads, GPS devices, digital cameras, e-readers, video cameras, external batteries, flashlights, and many other electronic gadgets. This product is also suitable for backup DC power to charge batteries and portable equipment for hikers, travelers and off-grid power locations.

The Solarade solar charger is available for purchase from distributors as well as directly from our online IXYS Store, http://www.shop.ixolarcells.com. Additional product information can be obtained by visiting the IXYS website at http://www.ixys.com or by contacting the company directly.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

SunPower Breaks Ground on 102 MW Henrietta Solar Project

SAN JOSE, CA--(eSolarEnergyNews)-- SunPower today announced it has started construction on the 102-megawatt (AC) Henrietta Solar Project in Kings County, Calif. The system will generate power for Pacific Gas and Electric's customers under a long-term power purchase agreement. SunPower expects the plant to be operational by the end of 2016.

"With more than 5.8 gigawatts of operating solar systems worldwide, SunPower designs and builds solar power plants to leverage the company's proven experience and our technology's outstanding power-producing performance," said Jorg Heinemann, SunPower executive vice president, global power plants. "SunPower customers rely on the cost-competitive, emission-free power and long-term return on investment that our systems deliver."

SunPower anticipates that about 350 jobs will be created during construction of Henrietta. Approximately $73 million in local economic impact and an estimated $3.8 million in tax revenue will be generated as a result of the project. Once operational, the Henrietta project is expected to generate enough electricity for more than 22,000 homes, according to estimates provided by the Solar Energy Industries Association.

SunPower is constructing a SunPower® Oasis® Power Plant system at the approximately 670- acre Henrietta site. Oasis is a fully-integrated, modular solar power block that is engineered to rapidly and cost-effectively deploy utility-scale solar projects while optimizing land use. The technology includes robotic solar panel cleaning capability that uses 75 percent less water than traditional cleaning methods and can help improve system performance by up to 15 percent.

According to estimates provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the completed plant will offset the annual production of almost 128,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions, which is the equivalent of removing more than 614,000 cars from California's roads over the next 25 years.

KB Home's Latest Development in Irvine Come With Solar Power Included

IRVINE, CA--(eSolarEnergyNews)--KB Home, one of the nation’s largest and most recognized homebuilders, today announced the grand opening of Palo Alto at Stonegate Village, an exclusive collection of stylish single-family residences situated in one of Orange County’s most desirable master-planned communities. Located in the City of Irvine, home to some of the largest employers, highest safety-rated neighborhoods and most respected schools in Southern California, KB Home’s Palo Alto community offers homebuyers the opportunity to live in a well-established area consistently recognized as one of the best places to live in the country.

Homeowners at KB Home’s Palo Alto will have access to an array of resort-style amenities, including sport courts, a tot lot, barbecue areas, seven parks and four pools, with lush walking and biking pathways that wind through the scenic village. Parents at KB Home’s Palo Alto at Stonegate can be proud to send their students to highly-rated educational institutions within the award-winning Irvine Unified School District.

Located close to the 241 and 133 toll roads, and the 5 and 405 freeways, KB Home’s Palo Alto offers convenient travel for quick commutes to surrounding employment centers or leisurely trips throughout Southern California and beyond.

The 121 KB homes planned at Palo Alto all include expansive great rooms, sleek gourmet kitchens, and spacious master bedroom suites, with the ability to tailor each design to suit the discerning needs and tastes of a sophisticated clientele. The community’s three distinct floor plans range in size from 3,002 to 3,380 square feet and can accommodate as many as six bedrooms and six-and-a-half baths, including an en suite bathroom for each secondary bedroom. Pricing starts from the low-$1 millions.

KB homes at Palo Alto are also designed to be highly energy- and water-efficient, equipped with a variety of features that can lower use and utility bills for KB homeowners compared to typical new or resale homes. In addition to the array of resource- and money-saving elements KB Home includes in all of its new homes at no additional cost to buyers, all KB homes at Palo Alto will include high-efficiency solar systems as standard to help homeowners further reduce their energy usage and control their home’s utility expenses.

KB Home estimates that at current residential electric rates, a 1.4-kilowatt high-efficiency photovoltaic system installed as a standard part of a 3,380-square-foot, ENERGY STAR® certified home at Palo Alto would yield average energy savings of $205 per month, or nearly $25,000 over ten years, compared to a typical resale home without these features.

KB Home’s Palo Alto at Stonegate Village is now open in Irvine. For more information, visit www.kbhome.com or call 888-KB-HOMES.