25 July 2011

First Solar sells 10MW PV plant in Spain to KGAL

First Solar Inc of Tempe, AZ, USA, which makes thin-film photovoltaic (PV) modules based on cadmium telluride (CdTe) as well as providing engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services, has sold a 9.9MW (DC) solar power plant near Zamora, Spain to European Solar Power Fund — a renewable energy-focused fund for institutional investors managed by KGAL GmbH & Co KG of Grünwald, Germany.

Currently under construction by Gehrlicher Solar España S.L. (the Spanish branch of German-based PV project developer and system integrator Gehrlicher Solar AG) with an expected completion in December, the 37.6 hectare solar farm will produce an estimated 15,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of electricity annually (equivalent to the needs of about 3400 Spanish households and CO2 savings of about 5600 metric tons/year).

“The total capacity of solar farms owned and operated by KGAL’s investment funds now exceeds 200MW,” says KGAL’s managing director Dr Klaus Wolf. 

The solar farm is located in Pereruela in the province of Zamora, Spain, about 250km northwest of Madrid. The Zamora area is one of the sunniest in Europe, with about 1700 kWh/m2 of sunlight a year.

“Based on our long-term experience and the high potential of the Spanish PV market, we look forward to installing many more PV systems in this region as well as in the rest of the world,” comments Gehrlicher Solar España’s CEO Guillermo Barea Herranz. 

As with other large, ground-mounted solar farms such as the 53MW Lieberose solar farm in Germany and the 26.3MW Badajoz solar farm in Spain, First Solar helped to organize third-party financing in addition to supplying solar modules — in this case, 122,000 FS Series 3 thin-film modules.

“Large-scale projects are essential to greenhouse-gas reductions and driving economies of scale that make us more competitive with fossil fuels,” says Peer Guenzel, managing director of First Solar’s Utility Systems business group in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. “We are pleased to be able to continue to enable a market for large-scale solar power plants in Spain.”  

The long-term financing for the Zamora project was structured by HSH Nordbank AG. “We have been active in the renewable energy sector for several years now,” notes Jürgen H. Lange, head of energy at HSH Nordbank. “Knowing the international network, the financial and technical developments, and specific regional requirements for solar projects, we were able to structure the Zamora transaction in a way that satisfied the needs of all parties,” he adds.  

Tags: First Solar Thin-film photovoltaic CdTe

Visit: www.firstsolar.com

Visit: www.kgal.de

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