Solar power project breaks ground

Constellation Energy (NYSE: CEG) said that its retail energy business unit started construction on a 16.1 MW DC grid-connected photovoltaic (PV) solar installation in Maryland.

Part of the state of Maryland’s Generating Clean Horizons initiative, the approximately $60 million solar facility will be financed, owned and operated by Constellation Energy. The electricity produced by the system will be purchased by the state of Maryland’s Department of General Services and the University System of Maryland under 20-year solar power purchase agreements.

The ground-mounted installation will be comprised of approximately 220,000 advanced thin film PV panels from First Solar (Nasdaq: FSLR) situated on 100 acres of land leased from Mount St. Mary’s University.  In addition to PV technology, First Solar is providing engineering, procurement and construction services for the project.

The system is scheduled for operation in early 2012 and is expected to produce more than 22 million kWh of electricity per year.

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