SunPower starts construction of new solar PV system at Vandenberg Air Force Base in US

US-based SunPower has commenced construction of a new solar photovoltaic (PV) system at Vandenberg Air Force Base near Lompoc, California.

The 28MW project is expected to create nearly 150 jobs at peak of construction.

In addition, the Air Force Base has signed an agreement to purchase energy from the new plant, facilitating the sitewith fixed electricity rates over the next 25 years.

Vandenberg Air Force civil engineer centre rates and renewables division chief Dan Gerdes said: “The Air Force has an aggressive target to meet that requires full energy assurance for key missions.

“By diversifying our energy mix at Vandenberg to include SunPower's high efficiency solar technology, we're confident we'll have the electrons we need, when we need them, creating long-term value for our operations.”

Following its completion, the newsolarpower project will supply 54,500MW hours of energy annually, meeting about 35% of Vandenberg's total energy needs.

It will also help achieve the entire Air Force's goal of meeting 25% of its electricity demand with renewables.

SunPower executive vice-president Nam Nguyen said: “SunPower is pleased to offer a cost- competitive renewable energy solution to the US Air Force, which will provide increasing economic and environmental value to the Vandenberg Air Force Base for 25 years.

“We congratulate the Air Force for its commitment to renewable energy, and are proud to help the Air Force achieve its sustainability goals with SunPower's innovative solar solutions.”

Last year, SunPower completed a 15MW solar project at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada, US.