170MW Sonnedix Atacama Solar PV Plant Inaugurated By President Sebastián Piñera Of Chile
Chile's President Mr Sebastián Piñera inaugurated the 170MW solar PV plant Sonnedix Atacama, located in the commune of Pica (Atacama Desert). This is the largest solar PV plant owned by Sonnedix, a global solar independent power producer (IPP), in the country.
“Very few countries in the world have the potential of Chile in solar energy” said Mr Sebastián Piñera, President of Chile, “This project will change the life of people in Chile, for better”. Juan Carlos Jobet, Minister of Energy, and Miguel Ángel Quezada, Tarapacá Governor, also attended the event together with other regional authorities.
Axel Thiemann, CEO of Sonnedix, said: “Sonnedix Atacama, our largest solar plant to date, represents the efforts of a purpose-driven team, working relentlessly despite the challenges of 2020, to continue playing a key role in helping Chile meet its renewable power targets, delivering a constant and reliable source of clean electricity to our communities, and helping build a bright future for the next generations.”
Sergio del Campo, Representative Director of Sonnedix Chile, affirmed “this milestone consolidates Sonnedix as a strong player in the renewables sector in Chile, contributing to our country's energy transition, and also to the social, economic, and environmental development of the neighbouring communities. We are immensely proud of playing an active role in the renewable energy revolution of Chile, and we look forward to continue expanding our platform and the use of solar nationwide and around the world”.
With an investment of over USD 180M the plant started construction in June 2019. This 450-hectare solar plant is powered by around 500,000 solar mono panels and 48 central inverters, and it connects to the grid through two substations.
Sonnedix Atacama will produce around 470Gwh of clean electricity annually, powering more than 200,000 Chilean homes and avoiding around 200,000 tons of CO2.
Sonnedix started operating in Chile in 2015 and has since grown to operate 12 solar PV plants with an operating capacity of 229MW. The solar IPP has ambitious plans to expand further in the country, with a current portfolio of projects in different development stage, surpassing 700MW.