GTM Research's Utility PV Market Tracker keeps tabs on all 500-plus utility-scale solar projects in the United States, including projects in Arizona Public Services’ (APS) AZ Sun Program.

Last week, two 17-megawatt, utility-owned generation projects came online in Arizona: the Paloma Solar Plant and the Cotton Center Solar Plant. The commissioning of these two projects in Gila Bend marks the first installations to be completed as part of the AZ Sun Program. The Paloma plant was developed by First Solar and uses the company’s cadmium telluride (CdTe) panels. This is a first for APS, which has historically favored products with higher efficiencies. The Cotton Center plant was developed by SOLON and uses the firm’s monocrystalline silicon (mono c-Si) panels, SMA inverters, and a single-axis tracking system.

The Hyder Solar Plant, in construction less than a mile away in Yuma County, will be the third AZ Sun facility when completed later this year. Developed by SunEdison, the project will contribute an additional 17 megawatts to the utility-owned generation program.

APS is looking to develop 100 megawatts in Arizona by 2014 through the AZ Sun program.