The solar power system will provide the Army with 4.44-megawatts of installed photovoltaic capacity saving 10 million kilowatt hours of electricity and $930,000 annually. When finished, the White Sands project will be the largest renewable energy project in the Army.
The solar array to be installed is part of a $16.8 million Energy Savings Performance Contract with the Building Technologies Division of Siemens Industry, Inc.
White Sands Missile Range is a Test and Evaluation Command Installation operated primarily for the support of research, development, test and evaluation of weapon and space systems, subsystems and components. Encompassing a missile range/rocket launch range, White Sands is one of the largest military installations in the U.S. covering 3,200 square miles. The facility is unique in the fact that it has several agencies on site as tenants including NASA and the U.S. Air Force.
The White Sands solar power project is one of three large Energy Savings Performance Contracts the U.S. Army announced recently with a total value of $61 million. At Fort Bliss, Texas, Johnson Controls Inc. was awarded a $16 million project that guarantees to save $42 million in energy costs over 25 years, while annually generating about 2.2 million kilowatt hours of energy from a renewable source. Under the contract, the installation will purchase energy produced by 5,500 solar panels, without owning or maintaining the equipment.
The project was designed to offset peak afternoon energy demands when utility rates are highest and potential brown-outs are prone to occur. In addition to the solar panels, the agreement includes a variety of energy savings measures including utility monitoring and control systems to manage energy consumption of 120 buildings.
Johnson Controls was also awarded a $34 million contract to install wind and solar photovoltaic systems, light-emitting diode, or LED, lighting, energy management control systems, and other energy conservation equipment and processes in Puerto Rico. This contract will benefit Fort Buchanan and 11 Army Reserve Centers on the island. This 16-year contract is projected to save the Army more than $65 million over the contract life.