DOE offers three further PV conditional loan guarantees

01. July 2011 | Applications & Installations, Industry & Suppliers, Markets & Trends | By:  Becky Stuart

The U.S. department of Energy (DOE) has awarded three more conditional loan guarantees to photovoltaic projects, worth a total of USD$4.5 billion. Around 1,400 jobs and 1.3 gigawatts of photovoltaics are expected to be created.

Man in manufacturing facility holding First Solar thin film cadmium telluride photovoltaic module

First Solar will supply its thin film photovoltaic modules to all the projects. Image: First Solar.

According to a statement released, the loans will be used to support three alternating current Cadmium Telluride (Cd-Te) thin film photovoltaic generation facilities. Thin film module manufacturer, First Solar, is said to be sponsoring all the projects and, as such, will provide the modules for them.

Under its offers, the DOE has made $680 million available in the form of a conditional commitment loan guarantee to support the Antelope Valley Solar Ranch 1 project.

If it goes ahead, the project will see 230 megawatts (MW) of photovoltaics installed in the Antelope Valley area of the Western Mojave Desert. Up to 350 construction jobs are expected to be created and 622,000 MW hours of electricity per year generated. The power will be sold to Pacific Gas & Electric Company.

According to the statement, the project will feature "a utility-scale deployment of innovative inverters with voltage regulation and monitoring technologies that are new to the U.S. market".

DOE has also offered conditional commitments for partial loan guarantees of $1.88 billion in loans to support the Desert Sunlight project, which is comprised of Desert Sunlight 250, LLC and Desert Sunlight 300, LLC.

Set to be located on land managed by the Bureau of Land Management in eastern Riverside County, California, the total the project is worth 550 MW. 550 construction jobs are also expected to be created.

The statement goes on to say that construction will occur over two phases. During the first one, 300 MW of photovoltaics will be installed, which will be sold to Pacific Gas & Electric Company. The remaining 250 MW will be built during the second phase and will be sold to Southern California Edison. Overall, 8.8. million Cd-Te thin film modules will be used.

Finally, conditional commitments for partial loan guarantees have been offered to Topaz Solar Farms, LLC, to support its 500 MW photovoltaic project. Again set to be located in California, in eastern San Luis Obispo County, 500 jobs should be generated. During this project, over 8.5 million First Solar panels are expected to be used. The electricity generated will be sold to Pacific Gas & Electric Company.

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