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San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) and subsidiaries of Soitec Solar Development, LLC, a renewable energy company managed by Soitec (Euronext Paris), today announced the signing of three contracts with a combined capacity of 30 megawatts (MW) of solar energy. The electricity will be generated at three solar power plant sites in San Diego County that will use Soitec Concentrix™ technology. The concentrator photovoltaic (CPV) modules will be manufactured in a new Soitec factory to be built in the San Diego area. Soitec is a world leading supplier of advanced solutions for the energy and electronics industries.
"Including these three new contracts, SDG&E has signed nine renewable contracts over the past year for more than 1,100 MW of green energy, with nearly 520 MW from solar power, including a contract for up to 150 megawatts that also uses Concentrix™ technology," said James P. Avery, SDG&E's senior vice president of power supply. "Combined with another local solar contract we signed last year, these latest solar projects will increase the total amount of solar power generated in San Diego County by about 60 percent."
These three projects will produce enough renewable solar energy to serve more than 11,200 households a year and further contribute to SDG&E reaching its RPS goals. The projects will deploy ground-mounted dual-axis tracking CPV solar power system, which uses lenses to concentrate sunlight onto very small, extremely efficient solar cells which convert the light into electrical energy.
"We are extremely pleased to deploy our Concentrix technology for these three solar power plants in San Diego County," said André-Jacques Auberton-Hervé, chief executive officer and chairman of the board of Soitec. "Our CPV systems are perfectly suited for projects close to well-populated areas as the high system efficiency of CPV minimizes the amount of land needed for a given amount of electricity production. As a CPV leader, we are committed to the U.S. market and look forward to increasing our presence in the San Diego community with all of our San Diego operations."
Soitec will implement capacity investments and pursue options for related financing to construct its San Diego area factory. At full capacity, Soitec's San Diego area operations will generate up to 450 direct jobs and more than 1,000 indirect jobs. The factory location is anticipated to be announced this summer, with completion expected within 18 months of construction start. Soitec's delivery of the CPV systems for these three new solar energy facilities in San Diego County will begin in 2013 and finish in 2014.
The three power purchase contracts require approval from the California Public Utilities Commission.
About Soitec Group
Soitec (Euronext Paris) is an international manufacturing company, a world leader in generating and manufacturing revolutionary semiconductor materials, at the frontier of the most exciting energy and electronic challenges. Soitec’s products include substrates for micro and nanoelectronics (most notably SOI: Silicon-on-Insulator) and concentrating photovoltaic systems (CPV). The company's core technologies are Smart Cut™, Smart Stacking™ and Concentrix™, as well as expertise in epitaxy. Applications include consumer and mobile electronics, microelectronics-driven IT, telecommunications, automotive electronics, lighting products and solar power plants for large scale utilities. Soitec has manufacturing plants and R&D centers in France, Singapore, Germany, and the United States.
SDG&E is a regulated public utility that provides safe and reliable energy service to 3.5 million consumers through 1.4 million electric meters and more than 850,000 natural gas meters in San Diego and southern Orange counties. The utility’s area spans 4,100 square miles. SDG&E is committed to creating ways to help our customers save energy and money every day. SDG&E is a subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE), a Fortune 500 energy services holding company based in San Diego.
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