Phoenix Solar, Silicon Ranch partner on 38.6 MW project in Georgia


Phoenix Solar Inc., the U.S. subsidiary of Germany’s Phoenix Solar AG, has signed a contract with Nashville, Tennessee-based Silicon Ranch Corporation to build a 38.6 MW solar plant in Georgia.

The Simon Solar Farm, located outside Atlanta, will be one of the largest utility-scale solar power facilities in the state and Phoenix Solar’s largest solar installation in its 14-year history.

The project is currently under construction and scheduled to be completed by the end of the year.

Phoenix Solar will provide all engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services to Silicon Ranch to realize the ground-mounted solar park on 161 acres of land — the site of a one-time cotton farm — some 50 kilometers east of Atlanta, the state capital.

Phoenix Solar will also provide long-term operations and maintenance (O&M) support for the park.

The major project underscores Phoenix Solar’s strategic realignment, which has seen it move its operational focus to high-growth regions, including the U.S. and Asia.

Georgia Power, the state’s largest electrical utility, has agreed to buy the electricity generated from the solar park under a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with Silicon Ranch.

Silicon Ranch procured the first large scale solar PPA in December 2011 as part of the 50 MW solar purchase authorized by the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC). Georgia Power has since launched its "Advanced Solar Initiative," a voluntary program initiated in 2012 aimed at purchasing 210 MW of additional solar generating capacity.

Phoenix Solar is deploying modules from JA Solar at the solar park and will utilize SMA inverters and Unirac mounting systems.

The Simon Solar Farm is the most recent collaborative project between Silicon Ranch and Phoenix Solar, which have construction several solar power facilities in the Southeast, including a 9.5 MW solar installation at the Volkswagen factory in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Murray Cameron, CEO and president of U.S.-based Phoenix Solar, said, "The Simon Solar installation represents a giant step forward for the adoption of solar power in Georgia and the entire Southeast, and we are proud to be playing a key role in the region."

Cameron added that Phoenix Solar would have upon completion of the project approximately 50 MW of installed solar power facilities in the region as part of its strategic partnership with Silicon Ranch.

Matt Kisber, Silicon Ranch’s president and CEO, added that the strategic partnership with Phoenix Solar "allowed us to accelerate the timetable for bringing this project online this year."

Bernd Kohler, CEO of Phoenix Solar AG, said the Simon Solar project is among the strategic projects that will contribute to the company’s forecasted revenue increase this year to between €160 million and €190 million.

"Being selected to develop the Simon Solar project reaffirms our company’s strong commitment to focus on international growth markets, including North America and Asia," Kohler added.