About a month ago, local Virginia authorities gave sPower permission to move forward with their 500 MW-AC Spotsylvania solar power plant. At the time, the facility had announced that they’d come to agreement with Microsoft for 315 MW-AC of the power plants electricity production.
Since then, the sPower has announced two further deals for the remaining volumes of CO2 free electricity: one with the University of Richmond for the generation from 20 MW-AC, and the second an agreement for 165 MW-AC of output to a business conglomerate including Apple.
The University of Richmond announced plans to purchase all of the electricity from a 20 MW-AC portion of the plant partitioned into the legal entity Richmond Spider Solar LLC (see above image). The university’s press release notes the plant will use 130 acres and deliver 41,000 MWh per year, matching 100% offsetting 100% of its electricity usage. The notice suggests 47,000 modules, however, that doesn’t seem to align with proposed electricity output or the MW-AC sizing of the plant. pv magazine has sent an email to sPower requesting data specifics.
The second agreement was signed by Apple, Akamai, Etsy and Swiss Re as part of a 290 MW worth of purchases, with 165 MW being from the sPower solar project and 125 MW worth of power from a wind farm near Chicago. The company 3Degrees offered technical assistance to the group of companies.
Virginia, as of the end of 2017, had just over 630 MW-DC of solar power installed. Though we don’t officially know the MW-DC of the Spotsylvania project, a standard DC:AC ratio would suggest that this plant – if completed today – would double the state’s total installed volume. Of course , other projects will be built between the end of 2017 and the early 2020 completion date expected of this facility.
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