Sunnier Days Ahead for Tampa Electric With SMA Inverters

Burns & McDonnell recently completed a 106-acre solar photovoltaic (PV) project in Tampa, Florida. The 23-megawatt project, owned and operated by Tampa Electric, is now the largest single source of solar power in the Tampa Bay area, and is the largest solar installation in West Central Florida.

As the company’s first solar project in an engineering-procurement-construction (EPC) contractor role, Burns & McDonnell aimed to minimize risk, provide their client with a production target, and obtain exceptional performance at a great value. With these goals in mind, Burns & McDonnell chose to partner with the market leader for central inverters and counted on nine SMA Sunny Centrals to deliver high efficiency, flexibility and reliability.

“The Big Bend Solar Plant is significant in proving that utility-scale PV is cost competitive with traditional generation for regulated utilities,” said Matt Brinkman, Burns & McDonnell principal and national director of solar projects for the firm. “Solar costs have decreased dramatically.”

The project also includes more than 202,000 thin-film First Solar PV panels that track the movement of the sun and will help power nearly 3,300 homes. In addition, the project provides environmental savings of up to 30,000 tons of carbon dioxide every year, roughly the equivalent of removing 6,000 cars from the road.

We’re thrilled to be a part of this project equipping Tampa Electric’s first ground-mounted utility-scale solar project.

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