US's largest solar-plus-storage project just came online

January 2024 – Kern County, California.. The US project developer Terra-Gen and the US construction company Mortenson have completed and commissioned the huge Edwards & Sanborn solar and energy storage project.

US's largest solar-plus-storage project
Edwards Sanborn Solar Storage project – credit, Mortenson

With a PV output of 875 MW and a storage capacity of around 3.3 million kWh (3,300 MWh), this is currently the largest solar and energy storage project in the USA. The plant is located in Kern County, California.

Mortenson was the contractor responsible for the complete engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) of all components of the solar system and the energy storage system in this pioneering project.

The project covers an area of 4,600 hectares. More than 1.9 million thin-film solar modules from First Solar were installed. Batteries from LG Chem, Samsung and BYD were installed on the storage side.

The plant will supply the city of San Jose, the energy companies Southern California Edison, Pacific Gas & Electric Co. and the Clean Power Alliance as well as Starbucks, among others, with electricity. Part of the plant was built on the grounds of Edwards Air Force Base, making the project the largest public-private collaboration in the history of the US Department of Defense, according to Mortenson.

"The Mortenson team was tasked with an extremely difficult goal to build this project, and they proved to be the right partner for the job. We are excited to get Edwards & Sanborn up and running and benefiting the people of California," said Brian Gorda, vice president of engineering at Terra-Gen.

"Mortenson is honored to support Terra-Gen in bringing the Edwards & Sanborn project to fruition and providing clean, stable energy to the region. I am proud of the world-class facility our team has designed, built and commissioned for Terra-Gen," added Mortenson Senior Vice President Mark Donahue.

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