Cogentrix’s 30 MW concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) project in Alamosa, Colo. is the largest high-concentration solar field in the world, generating power for use by customers of Public Service Co. of Colorado, an Xcel Energy subsidiary.
Commissioned in April 2012, the Alamosa Solar Project consists of 504 dual-axis, pedestal-mounted trackers, each with a capacity of approximately 60 kW. A hydraulic motor rotates and tilts the assembly throughout the day so the surface of each panel maintains an optimal angle with the sun. Each tracker assembly is 70 feet wide by 50 feet high and converts one-fourth of the sun’s energy into useable electricity. Each assembly contains 7,560 Fresnel lenses that concentrate sunlight approximately 500 times onto multi-junction solar cells, which produces more energy at a lower cost than silicon solar cell-based technology.