Luke Air Force Base Goes Green with 15MW Solar Power Installation
Luke Air Force Base will soon be a much more eco-friendly facility, due to the planned construction of a 15 megawatt solar installation on 100 acres of land near the base in Glendale, Arizona. The contract for building this solar energy facility was awarded to SunPower Corporation, the second largest manufacturer of solar panels in the country.
The solar installation is expected to provide Luke Air Force Base with nearly half of the electricity it requires during peak hours. The base currently uses approximately 60 million kilowatt hours of electricity each year, costing a total of $5 million. This solar installation should ultimately save Luke money, as it will free the base from the price spikes that often affect fossil fuels.
In addition to being environmentally friendly, the solar installation at Luke Air Force Base will also help the economy. Construction on the solar installation, which will begin in January 2011 and last for approximately a year, is expected to create 550 new jobs. This construction will not cost taxpayers any money up front. Arizona Public Service, a local utilities company, will own the solar installation and sell electricity to Luke Air Force Base under a long-term contract.