In another example of the Pentagon’s strong commitment to deploying renewable energy, Skyline Solar has been awarded a project by the U.S. Department of Defense for the installation of its PV systems at two military bases in the U.S. southwest. The object of the $1.58 million project is to demonstrate Skyline Solar’s high-gain solar (HGS) performance in hot and sunny climates, and validate its field upgradability and rapid system deployment capability. 

Skyline Solar sources told PV-Tech that the two systems, each featuring 100KW of installed power with a combined output of 436MWh/yr, will be installed at Edwards Air Force Base in California and Fort Bliss in Texas. Construction is expected in the second half of 2011.

The DoD launched the Environmental Security Technology Certification Program (ESTCP) to promote innovative, cost-effective environmental technologies through demonstrations on the department’s sites. Skyline Solar has been awarded an ESTCP project in a competitive solicitation intended to identify technologies that solve key DoD needs and have the highest potential for widespread deployment.

“The ESTCP is a terrific program that encourages the adoption of renewable energy by the Department of Defense in order to bolster national security and accelerate energy independence,” said Thomas Rohrs, CEO of Skyline Solar. “The competitive bid process and the resulting DoD contract validate Skyline Solar’s ability to deliver proven performance, upgradability and rapid scale. The projects on U.S. bases will demonstrate the unique effectiveness of Skyline’s HGS technology in helping to meet the energy needs of our military and government institutions.” 

During a recent Energy Security Forum speech, Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, described the need for the military to take a serious look at renewable energy from an energy security standpoint. “Failing to secure, develop, and employ new sources of energy or improving how we use legacy-energy systems creates a strategic vulnerability and, if left unaddressed, could threaten national security.”