A 5-megawatt AC (7.4MW DC) installation of high-reliability Kyocera solar modules began commercial operations at Somers, Connecticut last December, providing enough annual generating capacity to offset the power needs of approximately 5,000 homes. The Somers project is the latest that Kyocera has developed and financed in the United States.
“Kyocera solar modules are efficient and reliable, we have 38 years of experience in manufacturing photovoltaic energy solutions,” said Steve Hill, president of Kyocera Solar Inc. “Based on that history, we know Kyocera modules can be counted on to continue yielding high energy output for the 20-year agreement and beyond, serving Somers Solar Center and the people of Connecticut well.”
The system’s solar modules offer an effective way to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, which scientists regard as a primary contributor to climate change. Somers Solar Center will produce more than 10,200 megawatt-hours (MWh) of clean, renewable electricity annually, with a carbon impact equal to reducing oil consumption by 16,779 barrels ― or taking 1,503 cars off the road.
Kyocera Solar in collaboration with CleanPath, a San Francisco-based clean energy project company, financed and developed Somers Solar Center Prime Solutions Inc., a Connecticut-based engineering, procurement and construction company, designed and built the system using 23,150 Kyocera 320-watt solar modules. Somers Solar Center occupies 50 acres in north-central Connecticut and the project represents a new solar project development business strategy for Kyocera and the continuation of Dominion’s commitment to a diversified portfolio of renewable energy.
“Kyocera is leveraging its financial strength to develop and finance solar projects under highly attractive terms,” Hill continued. “This new business model enables Kyocera to offer its high-quality modules and unmatched track record to customers at very competitive rates.”
Kyocera’s new status as a U.S. solar project developer follows the precedent it set in Japan, where it owns and operates a 70MW solar installation in Kagoshima, and is in the process of building 30 to 35 additional smaller-scale solar projects to provide an additional 60 to 70MW of renewable generating capacity. In November 2013, Kyocera and Madison School District in Phoenix, Ariz., inaugurated a 1.6MW solar energy project that will offset over 60 percent of the school district’s annual electricity consumption.