Solar Power in California - Engineer Simple

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Solar Power in California

California is a western U.S. state, having a population of more than 40 million. This state has cliffs line beaches, Sierra Nevada mountains, farmlands, and the Mojave Desert. These versatile geographical footprints make this state more suitable for harnessing solar energy. There are several small, medium, and mega projects of solar power plants implemented in California. Let's have some key information about these projects.

Solar power plants in California

Maverick solar project

The Maverick solar project has a nameplate capacity of 173.40MW consisting of more than 2 million solar photovoltaic modules. The grid-connected solar power plant is fully ground-mounted. This project is located on the Palen solar site having an area of 3,478 acres. The land is managed by the U.S. bureau of land management in the riverside country.  

Wind hub

A solar park is located in the Mojave desert. Its installed capacity is 20 megawatts whose generation output is equivalent to more than the demand of 9000 Californian homes.

  • It consists of 55,000 photovoltaic solar panels.

Ring the construction period, it created thousands of jobs for the locals. It has also ground mounted and on-grid technology. 

North star solar facility

The North star solar facility has a 60-megawatt solar power farm in Fresno country, California.

  • Spreading over 626 acres of land, it consists of more than 7,50,000 thin film solar panels in a single-axis tracking table.

It can meet the load demand of more than 21,000 average homes.   

Topaz Solar Farm

Coming to one of the world's largest solar power plants Topaz Solar Farm in San Luis Obispo County, California, United States. The installed capacity is 550 megawatts. Construction on the project began in November 2011 and ended in November 2014 at a valuation of 2.4 billion dollars.

  • The annual net output of this plant is 1282 Gigawatt hours.

This farm can produce sufficient energy to power more than 1,60,000 average Californian homes. 

Beacon Solar Project

The Beacon Solar Project is a photovoltaic power station located in the northwestern Mojave Desert, near California City in eastern Kern County, California.

  • It can generate 250 MW of renewable energy for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.
It consists of 903,434 panels on a single-axis trackers system and it has ground-mounted technology. 

Lvanpah Solar Facility

The Ivanpah site in the Mojave Desert, near the California-Nevada state line, spans 3,500 acres and contains 347,000 sun-facing mirrors called heliostats.

  • This thermal solar power plant can produce a gross output of 392 megawatts

It is also one of the biggest solar thermal power plants in the world that showcase state-of-the-art technology for solar farms. 

Mount Signal Solar Project

The Mount Signal Solar Project, also known as Imperial Valley Solar 1 (IVS1), is a utility-scale photovoltaic power plant, located in Imperial County, California.

  • The 206-megawatt solar farm is owned by silver ridge power which was formerly known as AES solar.

It is one of the largest single-axis tracker solar power plants in the world. It will produce enough energy to power 72,000 homes in the San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) service territory. A 25-year power purchase agreement has been signed with SDG&E to purchase the plant’s power output. 

California Valley Solar Ranch

The California Valley Solar Ranch (CVSR) is a 250-megawatt (MWAC) photovoltaic power plant located in the Carrizo Plain, northeast of California Valley. The total number of generating units is five. 

Genesis Solar Energy Project

The Genesis Solar Energy Project is a concentrated solar power station located in the Mojave Desert on 1,920 acres of Bureau of Land Management land, in eastern Riverside County, California. The plant is owned/managed by Genesis Solar, LLC, a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources, LLC. It is a type of solar thermal power plant that uses solar collector plates to concentrate the sun's energy using a technology called the parabolic trough. The construction cost is 1.25 billion US dollars.

  • The nameplate capacity is 250 megawatts which consist of 5,00,000 collectors.
The annual net output is 620-gigawatt hours. 

Antelope Valley Solar Ranch

The Antelope Valley Solar Ranch 1 is a photovoltaic power plant of 230 megawatts near Lancaster within Antelope Valley, in the western Mojave Desert, Southern California. It uses cadmium telluride modules made by the US thin-film manufacturer First Solar.

  • The construction cost is 1.36 billion dollars. The annual net energy output is 614-gigawatt hours

Above are some significant power plants that are playing an important role in fulfilling the energy demand of Californian states.

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