In a move that is sure to trigger interest across the solar industry, the Solar Trust of America has decided to change its plans for the first phase of its 1GW Blythe Solar Power Project. Switching from concentrated solar power (CSP) to photovoltaic technology for the first phase of the project (500MW), the company has cited improved PV market conditions for the decision.
This change will allow a phased roll-out of the facility’s construction, compared to the 250MW installments that were necessary when the company planned on using CSP technology. The use of photovoltaics instead of CSP technology will enable Solar Trust to develop the site as a commercial PV project.
“In light of our change in technology, we now plan to finance the facility in the commercial bank market,” said Uwe T. Schmidt, chairman and CEO of Solar Trust of America. “This move underscores Solar Trust’s focus on maximizing the potential of our sites by deploying the right technology at the right time. We develop solar projects at the size and scope of the largest conventional power plants, and in doing so validate solar as a mainstream energy source. Our expansive solar supply chain leverages economies of scale and improves the competitiveness of our projects and other utility-scale projects throughout the Southwest.”