Ameren and its utility companies in Illinois and Missouri have launched what’s being called a major solar energy initiative that will span both states. The corporation is installing solar energy systems at its downtown St. Louis headquarters campus, while Ameren Illinois Utilities will also install solar systems at one of its facilities.
Burns & McDonnell (which has offices in Chesterfield, MO) has been chosen to develop a conceptual design for the demonstration projects, which would include the latest in solar system technologies. The global engineering firm has designed and managed renewable energy installations, including development of a demonstration project at their Kansas City, MO, corporate headquarters.
“This initiative reflects our strong interest in pursuing a diverse portfolio of generation options that include renewable resources,” said Thomas Voss, Ameren CEO/president. “We have a long history of incorporating renewable resources into our generation portfolio–from the early decades of the 20th century when we began adding hydroelectric generation. Moving to solar energy at our facilities is a natural for Ameren.”
“At these sites, we will be able to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiencies of specific types of solar systems in this region,” added Voss. “After the systems become operational, we will begin offering a range of online information about our findings from the project–information that should help customers in their own evaluations of different types of solar systems.”
This project will be developed in stages, beginning with solar installations either on the roof and/or grounds of two Ameren campuses, the company said. The generating capacities for its solar installations will range between 25KW and 550KW, with project designs completed by mid-April and first-phase installation projects finished by fall 2010.