Amazon Air Hub adds 2 MW rooftop solar array


Customers of Duke Energy Kentucky will now source their electricity in part from a 2 MW solar array built on the rooftop of an Amazon Air Hub. The $1.5 billion Air Hub is the logistics giant’s own airport designed to meet its growing shipping needs.

The 5,600 panel array is the largest rooftop installation in Kentucky, topping the 800,000 square foot airport adjacent to the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport. The 2 MW utility solar project adds to the local distribution grid and can serve the demand of 400 homes.

The solar project is a joint partnership between Amazon and Duke Energy, aligning with both companies’ renewable energy goals. Amazon’s Air Hub was selected for its substantial and accessible flat roof and its proximity to infrastructure needed to feed the solar energy to the distribution grid, and then to nearby customers.

The 2 MW array at Amazon’s Air Hub.

“Powering our operations with 100% renewable energy is an important part of Amazon’s commitment to reach net zero by 2040, and we built Amazon’s Air Hub – the largest field operation in Amazon’s history – with sustainability in mind,” said Chris Roe, Amazon director of energy and sustainable operations.

Duke Energy has a few other distributed solar sites in the region, including the Walton Solar facilities in Kenton County, which are comprised of 19,000 panels and offer 4 MW of capacity, and the Crittenden Solar facility, located in Grant County with 12,500 panels and 2.7 MW of capacity.

Duke Energy Ohio/Kentucky provides electric service to 900,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in a 3,000-square-mile service area.

Amazon has also been active in solar development in Kentucky. The company recently supported a partnership at an agrivoltaic installation developed by Silicon Ranch at Kentucky’s Hazelbrook Farm. In the partnership, sheep graze under the solar panels both to regenerate soil health and prevent the vegetation from interfering with energy production, and the panels provide shade for the sheep. The arrangement allowed Hazelbrook Farm to triple the size of its flock to 1,000 sheep and change the farm from a part-time operation to year-round, said Amazon.

“Amazon is on a path to powering our operations with 100% renewable energy by 2025, and we want to ensure the local communities where our customers live and work are also benefiting from the solar and wind projects that we support,” said Charley Daitch, director of energy and water strategy at Amazon Web Services (AWS).

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