Solar panel manufacturer SolarWorld said Jan. 14 that it will supply 10.5-MW (dc) of 72-cell solar panels to power a project located near Lakeview, Oregon, in the state’s south-central high-desert outback.
Working with project developer Obsidian Renewables, SolarWorld said it will provide solar technology to go into an 8-MW (ac) project that is expected to produce about 20.8 million kilowatt-hours of electricity a year.
SolarWorld began marketing 72-cell solar panels in mid 2014, and the company said it has dramatically increased production and sales since then. The company is ramping up a new factory to produce them at its U.S. hub in Hillsboro, Oregon.
“Obsidian Renewables is the exact type of customer we had in mind when we entered the 72-cell market, and working with customers like them we will continue to increase production and employment here in the USA,” said Ardes Johnson, SolarWorld’s U.S. vice president for sales and marketing. “Obsidian values the high quality and efficiency that comes from a company with more than 40 years of industry-leading experience.”
Obsidian Renewables, based in Lake Oswego, Oregon, is developing the ground-mounted Black Cap II system, adjacent to a similar, earlier project. Construction of the new system is expected to be finished in 2016. Obsidian will sell this power to PacifiCorp under a long-term power purchase agreement.
“SolarWorld’s reputation for high technological quality precedes it,” said David Brown, senior principal of Obsidian Renewables. “The market-leading output of its 72-cell product will translate into higher energy yield and therefore cost savings. The technology is ideal for tapping the solar resource at this well-located site.”
The project, Brown said, has strong support from the city of Lakeview, Lake County, the Lake County Resources Initiative and the Oregon Department of Energy.
SolarWorld manufactures and sells high-tech solar power solutions. The group, headquartered in Bonn, Germany, employs about 3,700 people and carries out production in Freiberg, Germany; Arnstadt, Germany; and Hillsboro, Oregon. From raw material silicon to solar wafers, cells and modules, SolarWorld manages all stages of production ‒ including its own research and development.