Case Studies >

Putah Creek

  • Yolo County, CA
  • 2.6 MWp
  • Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E)

PROJECT SUMMARY

Putah Creek stands out as one of the first utility scale
solar facilities to utilize California’s Feed-in Tariff as implemented through Senate Bill 32. The SB 32 program was initiated through PG&E’s Electrical-Renewable Market Adjusting Tariff (E-REMAT) which became effective in 2013. This locally owned and operated solar facility feeds into the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) controlled grid. Blue Oak Energy co-developed the project and worked alongside local entities in Yolo County to deliver the site, achieving completion within six months from the start of construction. 

BLUE OAK ENERGY SCOPE

In addition to co-developing this project, Blue Oak Energy provided full Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) services. Working within county parameters, the Blue Oak Energy teams provided efficient solutions to fully permit, design, and build the solar farm with minimal impact to the surrounding community. The property was designed to elimi- nate the need for grading and drainage modifications. Close coordination with the CAISO “bucket” process was necessary to ensure compliance with the grid operator’s supervisory control and data acquisition system (SCADA) requirements. Blue Oak Energy engineered and commissioned the SCADA system to meet the CAISO requirements for renewable energy generation on the distribution grid. The interconnec- tion to an adjacent substation required careful engineering and project management coordination with PG&E to mini- mize expenses and ensure a definite system startup schedule. 

SYSTEM SPECIFICATIONS

Panel Type: JA Solar modules
Panel Quantity: 8,640
Racking Type: Array Technologies Single Axis Tracker
Foundation:  Driven W-flange piles
Inverter Type: Advanced Energy Solaron
Property: 18 acres
DC Voltage: 600 V Bi-Polar System
AC Voltage: 12kV
 

KEY FEATURES

• One of the first E-REMAT program solar facilities to be installed on the CAISO electric grid.

• Each motor block sub array was set to a specific plane to eliminate grading and shading while also maximizing generation particularly during tracker backtracking.

• There was no change to existing grades and historical drainage patterns were left intact.

• The project involved the design and installation of a Broken Delta Ground Bank for utility grid safety and reliability.

• Co-developed with the local owner and constructed on schedule to meet strict utility commissioning requirements.