Construction begins on solar & battery project

Construction has started on a 10-megawatt photovoltaic solar generating facility and 15-megawatt battery storage system located on Edwin Road west of North Oracle Road, within Pinal County. The Chirreon Solar and Battery Storage Facility (Chirreon), which will serve Trico Members, is projected to be in service by summer 2022.

Chirreon will be located in the Trico service area on approximately 90 acres of land owned by the Arizona State Land Department. The solar panels have single-axis tracking devices that automatically track the sun throughout the day to maximize power generation. The battery storage will help Trico delay the cost of transmission and distribution upgrades and manage area load in a more efficient and cost-effective manner.

Once operational the Chirreon facility will produce more than 30,000 megawatt-hours of energy each year, or enough to power about 3,000 average residential homes.

“As a non-profit cooperative, Trico is dedicated to providing its Members with energy solutions that are sustainable and cost‑effective. Building a community scale solar and battery project allows our membership to share in the benefits of an economical, renewable resource. The battery storage system at Chirreon will be one of the first for a cooperative in Arizona, and shows Trico’s commitment to serving its Members in innovative ways,” said Brian Heithoff, CEO and General Manager of Trico.

Trico, Torch Clean Energy, SOLV Energy, and CoBank have partnered on the facility. This is the second community solar project that Trico and Torch have partnered on. Through a long-standing partnership, CoBank provided the financing for this project.

“Torch is excited to again play a role in Trico’s leadership position in affordable carbon free energy. The start of construction for the Chirreon Solar and Storage project is a key milestone in their energy transition” said Jonathan Kilberg, President of Torch. “We are proud to be Trico’s partner for their first solar + storage project.”

On January 25, 2022, 12 battery packs – weighing 55,000 pounds each – were delivered to the Chirreon Solar and Battery Storage Facility in Pinal County. Chirreon is projected to be in service by summer 2022.
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