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Starwood Energy Group Global LLC says that its affiliate, Starwood Solar I LLC, has signed a definitive power purchase agreement (PPA) with Arizona Public Service Co. (APS). Starwood Solar will contract with Lockheed Martin Corp. to construct a 290 MW concentrating solar trough plant in Harquahala Valley, Ariz., and commit all the renewable energy and capacity from the facility to APS under the PPA.

The facility, scheduled to be completed in 2013, will be the world’s largest dispatchable solar energy plant ever built and will provide enough electricity for nearly 73,000 APS electricity customers, according to Starwood Solar.

The plant's solar technology will use parabolic mirrors to track the sun and focus the sun's heat on a heat-transfer fluid, which will transfer its heat energy to water, creating steam. The steam is then used to run conventional steam turbines to create electricity. The heat energy in the fluid also can be stored and used at a later time to generate electricity when most needed by APS' customers.

The plant will be located in the Maricopa County, Ariz., approximately 75 miles west of Phoenix, and will be owned by Starwood Solar, with all the power generated by the facility provided to APS through a long-term PPA. Lockheed Martin will be responsible for engineering, procurement and construction, as well as operations and maintenance when the facility is complete.

Over the next 12 months, Starwood Energy and its affiliate, Nautilus Solar Energy LLC, will work to complete permitting and structure and place the construction and permanent financing.

SOURCE: Starwood Solar


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