Total, SunPower build 70 MW solar power plant in Chile

Total and SunPower Corp. announced the completion of the 70 MW PV Salvador project.

PV Salvador power plant is expected to produce nearly 200 GWh of solar energy per year, enough to supply electricity to about 70,000 households in Chile.

SunPower designed and constructed PV Salvador. At the 341-acre site, SunPower installed SunPower Oasis C1 Power Plant technology, featuring single-axis trackers and over 160,000 SunPower solar panels. About 300 jobs were created during construction work, many of which were staffed by local residents.

SunPower will now provide on-going operations and maintenance. In the desert environment, cleaning the panels using SunPower's robotic cleaning patented technology may help increase annual power production by as much as 15 percent while using up to 75 percent less water than conventional panel cleaning methods.

PV Salvador will initially operate on a merchant basis where the electricity produced is sold on the spot market and is delivered to the Sistema Interconectado Central (SIC) electricity network. The facility connects through the power infrastructure of Corporación Nacional del Cobre de Chile (Codelco).

The Overseas Private Investment Corp. (OPIC), the U.S. government's development finance institution, financed 70 percent of the nearly $200 million project cost through long-term non-recourse project debt. The remaining portion was funded by Etrion, Total and Solventus, based on ownership interests of 70 percent, 20 percent and 10 percent, respectively. 

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