Ozarks Electric to include solar energy power in 2016

by The City Wire staff ([email protected]) 157 views 

Today’s Power Inc. (TPI) has reached an agreement to provide a one-megawatt AC solar array for Ozarks Electric Cooperative of Fayetteville. Ozarks Electric plans to offer its members the opportunity to subscribe to solar energy produced by the system.

“This will be the first utility-scale, member-owned solar power generation facility in Arkansas,” said Mitchell Johnson, president/CEO of Ozarks Electric. “Many of our members have indicated a strong interest in their cooperative providing opportunities to allow them to participate in a cost-effective, solar energy program. We are pleased to partner with TPI to deliver a great offering to our members.”

The Springdale-based system, which is scheduled for completion in the second quarter of 2016, will involve an array of approximately 4,080 panels and encompass approximately 3.99 acres on a six-acre site. The output of the energy produced by the array could provide for the power needs of up to 160 homes, according to TPI President Michael Henderson.
“This system provides superior energy density and requires much less geographic space than other solar energy options. It’s a unique configuration that gets up to 20 percent more energy than traditional solar systems,” Henderson said.
Troy Scarbrough, vice president of engineering of Ozarks Electric Cooperative, said the safety attributes and unique architecture of the solar panels along with the efficient use of land are among the reasons that the cooperative selected the TPI product.
Johnson said the project will not be subsidized by members that choose not to participate.
Today’s Power, Inc. is a subsidiary of Arkansas Electric Cooperatives Inc. (AECI), a Little Rock-based utility service cooperative owned by 17 Arkansas electric distribution cooperatives.