Sampling Solar in Saudi Arabia

When most people think of Saudi Arabia, they think oil. But now, the world’s largest oil

exporter is taking steps toward solar.

SolFocus, a California-based solar power developer, recently announced plans to install

Saudi Arabia’s first commercial solar power plant.

The system, located in Bahra, will also be the largest concentrated photovoltaic (CPV)

system in the region.

CPV systems use reflecting shields to multiply the amount of sunlight hitting panels.

Converting up to 40 percent of solar energy into electricity, these systems are more

efficient than regular photovoltaic systems.

With the capacity to produce 300 megawatt hours of electricity per year, the plant will be

larger than any single installation in Abu Dhabi’s Masdar CPV plant.

The Bahra plant is expected to open by the end of the year. This will be the first of

several power plants installed throughout Saudi Arabia by Vision Electro Mechanical


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