PV solar system provider First Solar has installed approximately half of its 141MW Luz del Norte solar project in Chile, as the first two blocks of the project have been connected to the country’s central grid.
Construction of the plant, located 58 kilometers north of the city of Copiapó, began in August 2014 and is expected to be completed by January 2016. Once finished, it will produce enough energy to power more than 174,000 homes and remove 185,000 metric tonnes of CO2 annually.
Cristian Sjogren, First Solar’s Chile country manager, said: “This exciting milestone is proof of how utility-scale solar is a viable energy alternative for Chile right now. Luz del Norte harnesses one of the region’s richest resources, allowing Chile to reduce dependence on fossil-based fuels and meet renewable energy targets set by the national Energy Agenda.”
First Solar is searching for a permanent off-taker of power generated by the site, which is currently being sold on the open market.
Sjogren noted that the development of the project stands as another step in First Solar’s expanded presence in Chile.
He noted: “First Solar is positioned to offer comprehensive PV energy solutions to meet the needs of our customers from high efficiency modules and mounting solutions to turnkey utility solar solutions. We believe strong, mutually beneficial partnerships are critical to the continued growth of a reliable, sustainable solar energy market. Projects like Luz del Norte represent only the beginning of what is to come of solar energy in this region. First Solar is committed to taking energy forward in Chile.”