SunPower Corp. began construction on two solar power projects for Yolo County in California. The projects are expected to generate 5.8 MW of emission-free solar power for county facilities, worth an estimated $1.5 million in electricity costs the first year of operation.
The projects include one array built at the corner of West Beamer Street and Cottonwood Street in Woodland, Calif. and one at Grassland Regional Park in Davis, Calif.
The two new systems will be owned by the county, with the systems purchased through low interest public financing. SunPower built the county's first solar power system in 2010, a 1 MW ground-mounted system at the Yolo County Justice Center in Woodland, Calif.
The two ground-mounted solar power systems, which are expected to be complete this summer, will use SunPower solar panels, the most efficient solar panels on the market. The system in Davis will use SunPower panels mounted on the SunPower T0 Tracker system.
The Tracker follows the sun's movement during the day, increasing sunlight capture by up to 25 percent over conventional fixed-tilt systems, while reducing land use requirements.
According to formulas provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Yolo County's new systems are expected to avoid 5,600 tons of carbon dioxide emissions each year, equivalent to the emissions displaced from removing over 26,000 cars from California's roads over the first 25 years of the systems' operation.