8minutenergy Energizes Phases 1 and 2 of 328 MW Mount Signal Solar Farm
8minutenergy Renewables has energized Phases 1 and 2 of the 328 megawatt-dc (MW) Mount Signal 3 solar photovoltaic (PV) project in the city of Calexico in California’s Imperial Valley. The project is part of the 800 MW Mount Signal Solar Farm, which is among the largest PV installations in the world. With full commissioning of the plant underway, 8minutenergy expects to bring Mount Signal 3 to commercial operation by the end of 2018.
“We’re proud to hit this exciting phase of the Mount Signal solar cluster–one of the largest in the world. This project is important to the Imperial Valley’s future given the amount of abundant and reliable solar power that will be delivered to the region for decades to come,” said 8minutenergy CEO and Founder, Martin Hermann. “As the original developer of the 260 MW Mount Signal 1 project, we are thrilled to see the next project coming to fruition.”
8minutenergy and Capital Dynamics announced the acquisition of MS3 less than a year ago, with 8minutenergy continuing as the developer of the project. Benoit Allehaut, who led the acquisition by Capital Dynamics, described the value of the ongoing partnership between both firms: “Capital Dynamics is delighted about the excellent progress on Mount Signal 3. 8minutenergy demonstrated its world-class development and construction management capabilities with a project ahead of schedule and on-budget.”
Mortenson Construction is providing the engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contracting. First Solar supplied the 2.8 million Series 4 thin-film solar panels being used, and NEXTracker supplied its NX Horizon smart solar tracker. Southern California Edison and 8minutenergy signed a long-term power purchase agreement for the project’s clean energy in 2014.
“All of our dedicated partners have been invaluable in ensuring this important project will be completed on time,” said 8minutenergy President and Co-Founder, Tom Buttgenbach. “We would like to thank Imperial County’s Board of Supervisors, and the entire staff of the County administration, all of whom have been continuously supportive during the construction of this project. We send additional thanks to the local community, environmental groups, and an outstanding local workforce for enabling us to build Mt. Signal 3 ahead of schedule, and in an environmentally-friendly manner.”
Once complete, Mount Signal 3 will deliver over 770 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of clean, renewable power to residents of the 15 surrounding counties each year–enough energy to power more than 114,000 homes, and reduce carbon emissions by more than 530,000 metric tons each year. Mount Signal 3 is being built upon 2,000 acres of formerly low-productivity farmland, and its creation will significantly reduce water usage in the region, as well as protect wildlife habitat during construction and operation. Mount Signal 3’s development and construction is creating over 600 jobs in the region.