Soitec says its Concentrix concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) technology has been selected by Tenaska Solar Ventures to produce 150 MW of power for San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E). The new CPV solar power plant, named Imperial Solar Energy Center (ISEC) West, will be constructed on a 1057-acre site in Southern California's western Imperial County and is expected to be completed in 2015.
To support the project, Soitec plans to build a new factory in the San Diego region to manufacture its proprietary CPV modules. With an annual production capacity of 200 MW, the new CPV manufacturing facility will supply CPV modules not only to ISEC West, but also to other utility-scale solar power projects throughout the desert southwest of the U.S.
SDG&E signed a 25-year power purchase agreement with a subsidiary of CSOLAR Development LLC, a renewable energy company managed by Tenaska Solar Ventures, that will develop and operate the ISEC West solar power plant.
‘The start of construction of the Sunrise Powerlink has triggered a wave of proposed new utility-scale solar and wind projects in the Imperial Valley region,’ notes James Avery, SDG&E's senior vice president of power supply. According to Avery, approximately 450 new jobs in the region will be created by the CPV manufacturing facility.
The ISEC West project has applied for a U.S. Department of Energy loan guarantee. Upon receipt of the guarantee and closing of its agreement with Tenaska, Soitec says it will implement capacity investments to construct its San Diego area factory and pursue options for related financing.