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New Mexico Will Be Home To New Chevron PV Facility

Chevron Technology Ventures will break ground this spring on a 1-megawatt concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) facility in Questa, New Mexico, the largest of its type in the United States and one of the largest in the world.

CPV systems use lenses to concentrate the sun's rays on relatively small, high-efficiency solar cells. The CPV technology reduces costs by requiring fewer cells, although that is offset somewhat by the need for a solar tracking system.

Chevron Technology Ventures, a division of Chevron Corporation, selected Concentrix Solar GmbH of Germany to install its proprietary CPV system, according to a U.S. Department of Energy press release.

The facility will include about 175 high-efficiency solar panels placed on about 20 acres of land, and the electricity produced will be sold to the Kit Carson Electric Cooperative.

Chevron Technology Ventures will build the CPV facility on the tailing site of a molybdenum mine operated by sister company Chevron Mining Inc. The project represents a way to take contaminated lands and use them for the production of renewable energy. In September 2008, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency launched the "RE-Powering America's Land" initiative to promote the developing of renewable energy on potentially contaminated land and mining sites.

The EPA partnered with DOE's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) to identify Superfund sites, brownfields, and former landfill or mining sites that may be used for renewable energy projects. As a result of that work, the EPA and NREL are currently evaluating the feasibility of installing wind, solar, or small hydropower systems at 12 sites located in Puerto Rico and 10 states: California, Florida, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

"This commercial deployment is a key milestone for us and our U.S. strategy. It is an important reference for our technology, and the next logical step considering the outstanding performance demonstrated at our Spanish power plants," said Concentrix Solar CEO, Hansjörg Lerchenmüller, said in a press statement. module generation.

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