Dedication Ceremony for Solar One in Nevada
A group of state and local officials, renewable energy supporters, and solar industry leaders attended the dedication of the largest concentrating solar power plant in the world in the last 16 years, Solar One™. The ceremony took place at the ACCIONA Solar One facility in Boulder City, Nevada, near Las Vegas. Rated at 64 megawatts, Solar One is the third largest solar power plant of its kind in the world.
The solar plant uses concentrating solar power technology to provide electricity to Nevada Power and the Sierra Pacific Power Company during periods of peak demand for electricity. This technology uses 182,000 curved mirrors spread out over 400 acres in the southern Nevada desert to concentrate sunlight, collect the heat, and generate electricity using a conventional steam turbine. If the sun isn't shining, the plant can operate on natural gas in order to meet its contract requirements with the electric power companies. The plant is expected to generate about 134 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) per year.
ACCIONA Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jose Manual Entrecanales said, "We chose Nevada [for the location of Solar One] for the outstanding commitment of this state to the development of sources of renewable energy."
Roberto Denis, senior vice president of energy supply for Sierra Pacific Resources, which is the parent company of Nevada Power and Sierra Pacific Power, said, "Not only is solar energy a perfect fit in a state with such an abundant amount of this natural resource, it helps us to diversify our energy mix which ultimately benefits our customers."
For background information about the plant, read an article about Solar One with an aerial picture of the plant published in June 2007 by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) titled "Largest Solar Plant in 16 Years Now Online."
Read about the DOE involvement in the project in an article published by EERE titled "64-Megawatt Concentrating Solar Power Plant Opens Outside of Las Vegas."