One of the largest solar PV power plants in North America will be expanded, nearly quadrupling its generating capacity in a few years. Pacific Gas and Electric and Sempra Generation have signed a 25-year contract for a 150MW (AC) expansion of Sempra Generation’s Copper Mountain Solar complex in Boulder City, NV. First Solar will provide millions of ground-mounted thin-film CdTe panels and serve as the engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contractor for the 1100-acre project.
The companies said that the first 92MW of PV modules are slated for installation at the Copper Mountain Solar 2 site by January 2013, with the remaining 58MW scheduled for completion by 2015. PG&E has the option to accelerate the commercial operation date of the second phase under the terms of the deal.
Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
The power supply contract between Sempra Generation and PG&E is subject to approval by the California Public Utilities Commission.
Sempra Generation and First Solar previously teamed up on the construction of two other large-scale solar projects in Nevada, including Copper Mountain Solar 1. The 48MW installation was completed in late 2010 and is the largest PV power plant in the US. PG&E delivers the electricity produced at the site to its customers.
The 10MW El Dorado PV farm is also located in the same area (with First Solar panels), as well as the 72MW Nevada Solar One CSP plant. Once the expansion is completed, a total of 208MW (AC) of PV will be installed at the adjacent Copper Mountain Solar and El Dorado locations.