Nevada Solar One

Published: April 23, 2012

Nevada Solar One, Nevada Solar One is a concentrated solar power plant, with a nominal capacity of 64 MW and maximum capacity of 75 MW, spread over an area of 400 Acres. The projected CO2 emissions avoided is equivalent to taking approximately 20,000 cars off the road annually. The project required an investment of $266 million USD, and the project officially went to operation in June 2007. Electricity production is estimated to be 134 million kilowatt hours per year.

It is the second solar thermal power plant built in the United States in more than 16 years, and the largest STE plant built in the world since 1991. It is located in Eldorado Valley in the southwest fringe of Boulder City, Nevada, and was built in that city’s Energy Resource Zone, which requires renewable generation as part of plant development permits; Nevada Solar One was approved as part of Duke Energy’s larger El Dorado Energy project that built 1 GW of electrical generation capacity. The solar trough generation was built by Acciona Solar Power, a partially owned subsidiary of Spanish conglomerate Acciona Energy. Lauren Engineers & Constructors (Abilene, TX) was the EPC contractor for the project. Acciona purchased a 55 percent stake in Solargenix (formerly Duke Solar) and Acciona owns 95 percent of the project. Nevada Solar One is unrelated to the Solar One power plant in California.

In 2006, located 30 miles north of Tucson, Arizona Public Service’s Saguaro Solar Facility opened, and producing 1 MW. Nevada Solar One went online for commercial use on June 27, 2007. It use similar technology and was constructed over a period of 16 months. The total project site is approximately 400 acres (0.6 mi² / 1.6 km²), while the solar collectors cover 300 acres (1.2 km2).

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