Harvesting the Sun at the West Tennessee Solar Farm
The West Tennessee Solar Farm (WTSF) is now open for business!
Deputy Secretary of Energy Daniel Poneman attended the WTSF's ribbon cutting recently. At a capacity of five megawatts, the WTSF is the largest photovoltaic installation in the state of Tennessee and the seven-state Tennessee Valley Authority region. Located off I-40 in Haywood County, the WTSF is projected to produce enough energy to power 500 homes and offset 250 tons of coal per month. With $31 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 funds from the Energy Department, the WTSF is the largest funded project under DOE's State Energy Program.
Over 100,000 hours of work were required to install 21,434 solar panels and connect the WTSF to the grid. Proceeds from the power sales will be used to operate, maintain, and expand the array, as well as fund education and demonstration related activities. The Tennessee Department of Transportation will soon begin construction on an Information and Welcome Center at the WTSF. The center, which will house an interactive educational display, is expected to be completed in 2013. Read the complete story on the Energy Department Blog.