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Solar ♦ news digest


GreenVolts’ CPV system is more efficient than traditional photovoltaic and thin-film modules. By optimising and integrating field-proven, high- performance components such as proprietary optics and tracking technology into a complete system, GreenVolts delivers energy yields that can be 30 to 40 percent higher than traditional panel-based systems.


“The technology combines simplicity and precision with unmatched performance, fast installation, easy operation and low cost of production,” said Peter Leupp, head of ABB’s Power Systems division. “Our extensive footprint, which covers all key solar markets in the world, will help us to make this technology globally accessible.”


“Our complete and fully integrated photovoltaic system is an industry game-changer,” said David Gudmundson, president and CEO of GreenVolts. “Every component was carefully designed to work together in a turnkey solution that dramatically reduces the cost and complexity of solar projects. With ABB’s global presence and expertise, these benefits will now be available to customers worldwide.”


First Solar selling 550-MW Topaz CdTe solar plant


MidAmerican Energy is planning to buy the cadmium telluride PV power plant which will generate enough electricity for 160,000 homes in California


MidAmerican Energy Holdings Company has entered into definitive agreements to acquire the Topaz Solar Farm from First Solar.


will have the capacity to generate enough renewable energy to power approximately 160,000 average California homes. The more than $2 billion Topaz project is one of the two largest PV projects in the world, both being built by First Solar.


“MidAmerican is the No. 1 owner of wind- powered energy generation among U.S. rate- regulated utilities. Adding solar energy to our generation portfolio is a strategic move to invest in yet another renewable energy source,” said Greg Abel, chairman, president and CEO of MidAmerican Energy Holdings Company. “Our investment in wind resources benefits both our customers and the environment, and our entry into the solar energy industry expands our renewable energy footprint and will help meet current and future energy needs in a manner that reflects our ongoing commitment to environmental respect and cost-effective generation.”


“As energy needs continue to increase, the Topaz project will allow MidAmerican to produce renewable energy for thousands of Californians. This project also demonstrates that solar energy is a commercially viable technology without the support of governmental loan guarantees and reflects the type of solar and other renewable generation that MidAmerican will continue to seek to add to its unregulated portfolio.”


The 550-MW photovoltaic power plant being built in San Luis Obispo County, California,


First Solar has agreed to construct, operate and maintain the Topaz project for MidAmerican. Construction began in November 2011 and is expected to be complete by early 2015. The project will create approximately 400 construction jobs and 15 ongoing operations and maintenance jobs. According to an economic benefits study by The Brattle Group and California Polytechnic State University, the project is estimated to infuse $417 million into the local economy, the majority of which will be generated during construction, with the remainder over the project’s minimum 25-year operating period.


January / February 2012 www.compoundsemiconductor.net 183


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