Saturday, September 3, 2011
Mojave Desert's Solar Plant
There are several solar power plants in the Mojave Desert which supply power to the electricity grid. Solar Energy Generating Systems (SEGS) is the name given to nine solar power plants in the Mojave Desert which were built in the 1980s. These plants have a combined capacity of 354 megawatts (MW) making them the largest solar power installation in the world.Nevada Solar One is a solar thermal plant with a 64 MW generating capacity, located near Boulder City, Nevada.The Copper Mountain Solar Facility is a 48 MW photovoltaic power plant in Boulder City, Nevada. The Blythe Solar Power Project is a 968 MW solar thermal power station under construction in Riverside County, California. The Ivanpah Solar Power Facility is a 370 MW facility under construction which will consist of three separate solar thermal power plants. There are also plans to build other large solar plants in the Mojave Desert. Insolation (solar radiation) in the Mojave Desert is among the best available in the United States, and some significant population centers are located in the area. These plants can generally be built in a few years because solar plants are built almost entirely with modular, readily available materials, although financing has been difficult and the projects typically receive government-backed financing.