The Tucson Airport Authority has recently signed a lease with Tucson Electric Power. The 20-year agreement will reserve a portion of the Tucson International Airport (50 acres) for a photovoltaic system of 5-megawatts. Tucson Airport Authority CEO, Bonnie Allin explained to the press that this is a smart move for the airport, as the airport property is perfect for this type of development that will generate solar power for Pima County residents. The project is expected to operate by the end of 2011. The TAA and TEP have another solar panel project under their belt; solar panels were installed in the parking lot revenue control building in 2007.
Somerset, New Jersey has opened a solar photovoltaic panel manufacturing plant that has created jobs for an otherwise struggling area. MX Solar USA, a division of an Italian solar panel company, has already hired 30 people in the area and hopes to hire 200 more. The plant was opened in June on an 8-acre industrial park property. The company is looking to hire “green job” program participants and recent graduates, to those close to retiring age. The news is exciting for the people of Somerset, Franklin, and the surrounding areas.
China has developed the world’s first solar-powered air conditioner. The first units developed will be shipped to the United States for the American market, with subsequent units to be sold in China. The air conditioners, developed by Gree, are also able to product excess electricity that the United States plans to send back to power grids. Production will begin in early 2011 and all production efforts will also be 100% solar powered.