MILAN, 20. October 2009 - SunPower Corp. today announced that construction began this month on a 1-megawatt solar electric power plant in Mesagne, Comune di Brindisi, Italy. SunPower designed and is building the plant, which is owned by Bluenergia S.r.l. The project is being financed through a leasing agreement with Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena, and is expected to be completed early next year.
Across 2.6 hectares, SunPower is installing the proprietary SunPower(R) T20 Tracker technology, which follows the sun during the day and delivers up to 30 percent more energy than fixed-tilt systems.
This is the first power plant in Italy to use the T20 Tracker. SunPower has installed its T0 Tracker technology at other Italian power plant projects, including the 5-megawatt Api Nova plant and the 24-megawatt Montalto plant. The T20 differs from the T0 in that it sits entirely above the ground, requiring no drilling, and can deliver up to 7 percent more energy than the lower profile T0.
"We are pleased to partner with Bluenergia to deliver clean, reliable solar power in Italy," said Luca Bandini, general manager of SunPower Italia. "The SunPower T20 Tracker follows the movement of the sun during the day, increasing sunlight capture by up to 30 percent over conventional fixed-tilt systems, while significantly reducing land use requirements. The Tracker sits above the ground, eliminating the need for ground penetration and reducing construction time and environmental impacts."
"SunPower's unrivaled expertise and experience in the design and construction of solar power plants, as well as the company's superior technology, were the primary reasons we chose SunPower as our partner for this important project," said Mario Rossi, president of Bluenergia. "This project firmly establishes utility scale solar power plants in Puglia and will be an important source of clean, renewable and reliable power."
Bluenergia and SunPower have plans to begin construction on an additional 1-megawatt solar power system using T20 technology in Copertino (Lecce), Puglia region, later this year.
SunPower has installed more than 550 megawatts of large-scale solar power systems globally, including more than 200 megawatts of power plants in Europe.