The entire output from the plant will be purchased by El Paso Electric, which generates and distributes electricity through an interconnected system to approximately 363,000 customers in the Rio Grande Valley in west Texas and southern New Mexico.
The project is part of NRG and eSolar’s recently announced plans to develop up to 500MW of solar thermal power in California and across the southwestern US.
The plant is expected to be the first commercial-scale solar thermal project in New Mexico when fully operational in the summer of 2011.
The site for the development is a 450-acre property in southwest New Mexico, about 10 miles from El Paso, Texas, near the City of Sunland Park.
eSolar takes a modular approach to building solar power plants. Its systems require approximately one-quarter square mile to produce 46MW of power, enabling utilities of any size to incorporate solar energy at a scale specific to their needs.
In March this year, eSolar disclosed that it had tied up an exclusive licensing agreement with the ACME Group to build up to 1,000MW of solar thermal power plants in India over the next 10 years.