A 5-megawatt project in the world of photovoltaics doesn't always warrant news coverage.
But a 5-megawatt project in concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) is a big deal and we've learned of an under-the-radar deployment that is currently online and producing power.
I spoke with Jim Hayhoe, an economic consultant to the Village of Hatch and he confirmed that the project is indeed online. The project had initial interconnection on June 27 and as of a week ago was generating 4.8 megawatts. Construction for the project started in mid-January and was completed on schedule.
The Hatch CPV project employs Amonix CPV systems (although Amonix isn't commenting publicly) and sits on 39 acres in the Hatch Industrial Park, seven miles west of the Village of Hatch. The 5-megawatt system uses 84 Amonix trackers and is being built and operated by NextEra Energy Resources, a unit of NextEra Energy.
Each of the Amonix modules puts out about 60 kilowatts.
Blattner Energy of Albuquerque, NM is the EPC and construction contractor for the solar project. The project employed approximately 60 people during the construction phase. We've contacted Blattner for comment.
Electricity generated from the projects will be sold to El Paso Electric under a Purchase Power Agreement (PPA) to help meet New Mexico's Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard.
The project was funded by Industrial Revenue Bonds.
You can visit the working CPV site and attend The Hatch Chile Festival scheduled for Labor Day weekend. Hatch lays claim to being the home of the world's best chile pepper and can now add home to the largest CPV project to its title. At least until the 30-megawatt Alamosa project comes online.