Bahrain plans solar expansion and largest US project gets underway

Posted at May 25, 2012 » By : » Categories : News » Comments Off on Bahrain plans solar expansion and largest US project gets underway

Four organisations have announced plans for a 5 MW distributed smart solar energy project in the Middle Eastern kingdom of Bahrain.

Petra Solar, the National Oil and Gas Authority (NOGA), the Bahrain Petroleum Company (BAPCO) and Caspian Energy Holdings will develop solar energy in the Awali region and with the University of Bahrain.

The plans are the first phase of a national energy plan to generate electricity from renewable sources.

The project will see Petra Solar’s generating technology deployed in combination with smart grid technology to create a more stable and efficient electricity infrastructure.

“The project in Awali represents just the first step in a series of initiatives by NOGA to diversify the sources of energy needed to ensure sustainable development,” says His Excellency Abdul Hussain bin Ali Mirza, minister of energy and chair of NOGA. “Following a successful implementation of this pilot project we expect that other projects will follow in the near future.”

Meanwhile, the first solar panels have been installed at MidAmerican Solar and First Solar’s Topaz Solar Farms in San Luis Obispo County, California, which will be the world’s largest solar development once completed.

The 550 MW project will house nearly 9 million photovoltaic panels and once completed will generate enough power for around 160,000 homes.

MidAmerican Solar owns the project, which is being constructed, operated and maintained by First Solar using its own thin-film photovoltaic modules.

Construction began late last year and should be completed by early 2015.

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Related stories:
SolarReserve adds to South African photovoltaics projects (23-May)
Saudia Arabia launches renewable energy programme (18-May)

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