Project focus: Duke Energy selects initial 4.6MW of sites for solar PV distributed generation plan

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Duke Energy has selected four sites to install photovoltaic systems as part of the first phase of the utility’s distributed solar energy generation program in North Carolina. More than 20,000 modules will be deployed on the quartet of commercial/industrial rooftops, with a total installed capacity of more than 4.6MW.

The projects are part of Duke Energy’s plans to invest some $50 million to construct and own a total of 10MW of solar PV in the state, under the terms of the North Carolina Solar Photovoltaic Distributed Generation program approved earlier this year by the NC Utilities Commission.

The initial sites–National Gypsum in Mount Holly (1.2MW), Highwood Properties in Greensboro (1.6MW), Food Lion in Salisbury (1.3MW), and Childress Klein Properties in Charlotte (0.5MW)–were selected based on their ready access to the electrical grid and solar productivity potential, in addition to other essential lease agreement criteria, according to the company.

Installations will begin immediately, with all phase-one systems scheduled for completion by the end of 1Q2010, according to the utility.

Duke Energy could not comment on the types of modules or inverters to be installed, balance-of-system specs, or other project details. Spokesman Jason Walls told PV Tech via email that certain contracts and specifics for some of the locations had not been completed, adding that the company expects those details to be finalized with all of the installers by early November.

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