SunPower Corporation today announced that it plans to partner with Apple to build two solar power projects totaling 40 megawatts (MW) in ABA Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefectures, Sichuan Province of the Peoples Republic of China (PRC).
When complete, the two projects will be co-owned by Sichuan Shengtian New Energy Development Co., Ltd., SunPower’s project development joint venture, and Apple. The projects include Hongyuan Huanju Ecological Energy Co., Ltd., (Hongyuan) located in Hongyuan County and Ruoergai Huanju Ecological Energy Co., Ltd., (Zioge) located in Ruoergai County. Both are in the ABA Prefecture and will be 20 MW each.
The projects are currently being constructed, and the Hongyuan project already has 2 MW connected to the grid utilizing SunPower’s LCPV tracker. The technology combines single-axis tracking technology with rows of parabolic mirrors, reflecting light onto high efficiency SunPower Maxeon cells, which are the world’s most efficient commercially available mass-produced solar cells. Completion of the projects is expected in the fourth quarter of 2015.
These are the first solar projects deployed in the ABA Region. The projects are expected to provide up to 80 million kilowatt-hours per year while also protecting the ecosystem. The projects will feature SunPower’s unique “light-on-land” approach to solar photovoltaic power plant design and construction developed through its experience with over 2 gigawatts (GW) of power plant systems installed and operating globally. Utilizing this innovative dual-use approach means that pasture farming can continue while power is generated.
SunPower has provided solar solutions to Apple on six U.S. projects totaling 90 MW in California, Nevada and North Carolina. These China projects mark SunPower’s first international solar collaboration with Apple.