Sep 25, 2014 - US photovoltaics (PV) supplier SunPower (NASDAQ:SPWR) said Wednesday it has teamed up with the University of California, Davis (UC Davis) to build a 16-MW solar farm on campus.
SunPower will design and construct, as well as own and operate the solar array. It will supply for the facility its high efficiency solar panels and single-axis tracking technology. The trackers follow the sun throughout the day, increasing electricity generation by over 25% compared to the common ground-mounted installations, according to the manufacturer's calculations.
The ground-mounted solar plant is estimated to generate some 33 GWh per year, which will meet 14% of the university’s power demand. It is expected to lower UC Davis’s carbon footprint with about 9% and at the same time contribute to lowering electricity bills. Completion of the installation is scheduled for 2015.
This would be the largest solar plant in a US university or college, according to the press release. UC Davis estimates that when the solar farm is operational, above one-third of the total electricity on campus will be generated from carbon-neutral sources. It already operates several solar systems and one biomass facility and also recently announced it will start buying 200 GWh of solar power annually to power a number of campuses.
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