In one of the biggest solar projects yet announced in South America, T-Solar and Solarpack have signed an agreement with the government of Peru to build 80MW of PV power plants in the southern part of the country. The two Spanish companies’ contract stipulates an annual supply of 173GWh of PV energy over a period of 20 years.
Plans call for the joint development of four 20MW plants in the Tacna, Arequipa, and Moquegua regions, all of which must be operational before June 30, 2012. Two of these projects will be developed and run by T-Solar (Majes Solar and Reparticion Solar), with the other two (Tacna Solar and Panamericana Solar) run by SolarPack in a consortium with T-Solar.
According to the companies, the renewable electricity generated by the four plants will be bought by the Peruvian national grid system (SEIN) at a guaranteed price over 20 years, although the pricing plan has not been revealed.
T-Solar CEO Juan Laso said that his company wanted to participate in this process because “the project looks good, as there is high solar irradiation in these areas and the conditions in Peru are attractive, an investment-grade country with political and economic stability.”
The regions chosen for the installations, many of which are at high altitudes and have arid climates, have an impressive annual average irradiation of 2300 KWh/m2, according to the companies.
Laso added that this award “increases T-Solar’s backlog under development, which now comprises over 650MW.” The company already has 143MW in installed capacity sites in Spain, with 25MW more set to come online later this year in Spain and Italy.
Solarpack said that the Peruvian contract will allow the company to consolidate its operations in South America, where it is already one of the biggest developers specializing in photovoltaic energy, with some 90MW under contract.
From its subsidiary office in Chile, the company is spearheading projects including the Calama Solar 1 plant, said to be the first multimegawatt solar plant with an environmental license in the South American continent.
No additional details regarding the financial specifics of the deal or the timeline for project development and construction have been disclosed.
Although T-Solar has a 45MW amorphous-silicon thin-film PV module fab in Spain, the eventual deployment of those panels for the Peruvian sites has not been confirmed.
In its 22MW of solar installations already operating in Spain, Solarpack has used SunPower and Solon crystalline-silicon modules.