GCL signs a 110 MW solar power contract in Colorado (project layout, hardware included)

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GCL Poly manufacturers 22% of the world’s silicon for solar applications (over 74,000 MT), makes 29% of the world’s solar wafers (30GW of annual capacity), and, in 2017, they reached 6th on the list of solar panel manufacturers at 4.6 GW.

Not satisfied with dominating the upstream supply chain, the company has also moved into project development and ownership, with a goal of owning 3 GW of projects by 2020. In 2017, GCL launched its “Overseas Seeding Initiative” in key overseas target markets, including offices in Europe, Japan and North America.

This week the company announced that it has beat out major U.S. developers to secure a contract for a 110MW-DC solar plant in Brighton, Colorado with electric cooperative Intermountain Rural Electric Association (IREA). IREA will buy the power from this project under an initial term of 10 years, with options for three extensions of five years each. The solar farm is scheduled to be connected to the grid in 2020.

And when GCL comes to town, there are benefits for local economies as well. The two projects are expected to generate over $8 million in various local taxes.

The site is composed of two separate installations with the same interconnection. In July 2017, comments on the north half (above pair of images) of the project were filed with county planning authorities. The north half of the project is a 281-acre site that crosses multiple parcels and will host 37.5 MW-AC of solar.

Comments were filed for the southern half of the project (above) – that will cover 335 acres and total 42.5 MW-AC – in October 2017.

The total project, including north and south sites, will comprise 332,000 solar panels. GCL site layouts note model GCL-P6/72 H30 330W, but that model wasn’t listed among their standard panels.

The company also plans to use TMEIC 2.5 MW-AC inverters.

The modules will be mounted on NEXTracker single axis trackers, approximately 8-10 feet off of the ground and having a 60 degree – either way – rotation. From the site layout:

It is estimated that the plant will generate around 215 gigawatt-hours (GWh) annually – for a DC capacity factor of greater than 22%, and an AC capacity factor of greater than 30%.