Nellis Air Force Base to install 15 MW solar plant

image from Review Journal
U.S. Air Force Col. Richard Boutwell speaks during a ground breaking ceremony for the Nellis Solar Array II project at Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas

NV Energy has won a contract to build 15 MW of solar plant at the Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas of US at a cost of $50 million.

The installation will make Nellis Air Force Base home to the Department of Defense’s largest photovoltaic system.

“This project will increase our ability to fly, fight and win in air, space and cyber-space,” said Richard Boutwell, commander, Nellis Air Force Base.

“Today’s economic realities will make us be fiscally responsible. Having the ability to have solar energy that is reduced or free during daylight hours, while supporting the local community is vitally important,” he said.

Earlier in 2007 also the Base installed a 13 MW solar array, which was the largest in the country.

The power generated from all the solar plant will be sufficient to operate the entire base during the daylight time.

The plant is projected to be completed in the first half of 2016.
NV Energy will construct, own, maintain and operate the array. All power from the photovoltaic array will flow through the installation and power not used by the base will go to the grid.

NV Energy says the partnership with Nellis means there will be less of their cost transferred to customers. Nellis Air Force Base will provide free land for building solar array to the utility company.

The Base has decided to reduce its dependence on coal and has begun the shutting down of coal plants.

The solar system is expected to contribute reliability and flexibility when it comes to powering the base and the base’s mission to be the Air Force’s leader in tactics and training.

The reduced energy will allows the base to put money back into the mission.

SunPower incorporated is in charge of the design, construction and maintenance of the Nellis Solar Array Two.

In addition, it is estimated that about 150 jobs will be created during the construction of the plant.

Sabeena Wahid
editor@greentechlead.com