Eaton inverters help power 73 MW California solar power project

Power management company Eaton won multiple contracts to provide solar inverters, electrical distribution equipment and services for the 72.9 MW Redwood Solar Farm in Kern County, California.

The project, developed by sPower and 8minutenergy Renewables, is expected to generate 146 million kWh of sustainable electricity annually to power about 9,200 California homes.

The installation will also help local utilities meet the California Renewables Portfolio Standard of generating 33 percent of power from renewable energy resources by 2020. The terms of this contract were not disclosed.

Located on 345 acres of low productivity farmland, the 72.9 MW-direct current project is the first phase in what could ultimately be a larger solar project. sPower and 8minutenergy expect Redwood Solar Farm to begin generating clean sustainable power in June to August 2015.

Once the aggregated solar power project is complete, Southern California Edison (SCE), Pacific Gas and Electric Co. (PG&E) and the City of Palo Alto Utilities will receive the power produced from the solar arrays to power California homes and businesses through signed power purchase agreements.

The photovoltaic projects will tap Eaton solutions and services to help maximize energy harvest, while reducing installation costs and simplifying maintenance. Under the contracts, Eaton will supply its Power Xpert 1670 kW solar inverters and direct-coupled, Cooper Power series transformers, which are designed to help increase electrical resiliency in large commercial and utility-scale, grid-connect applications.

The project will also incorporate a range of additional Eaton power distribution solutions, including: custom AC switchboards for convenient auxiliary power, and group mounted 1000 Vdc Crouse-Hinds series solar disconnects, as well as startup and commissioning services for enhanced system safety and reliability.

Eaton received the contracts from Gehrlicher Solar America Corp., which previously signed an agreement with 8minutenergy to lead engineering, procurement, construction (EPC) and commissioning for the project.

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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at

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