First modules installed at 230 MW AVSR1 site

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A total of 3.8 million of First Solar’s thin film cadmium telluride modules are expected to be installed across 2,100 acres. When complete next year, the photovoltaic plant will be one of the largest of its kind worldwide.

The AVSR1 project has encountered several hurdles throughout the permitting and financing process. At the start of February, it was announced that the company had not received initial funding of the Department of Energy (DOE) loan "pending resolution of an outstanding construction permit issue". The DOE had made $680 million available in the form of a conditional commitment loan guarantee. The issue was resolved before the end of the month, however.

The project then had to halt work, while it waited for approval from the Los Angeles public works department regarding building codes, and health and safety requirements. Initially, work on the project began in August 2011. Due to the holdup, nearly 400 workers were furloughed while the approvals were pending.

Commenting on today’s news, Tony Perrino, First Solar Director of Engineering, Procurement and Construction said, "This process has paved the way for future projects in a region with enormous potential for solar energy development."

First Solar is also working on the 550 MW Desert Sunlight Solar Farm project in California. On Monday, the company announced that it had installed its 10 millionth power plant module at the site.