Intel Corporation (Intel) has launched first solar electric installation in New Mexico. The photovoltaic (PV) array is located in Rio Rancho. It will generate 10 kilowatt (kW) of solar energy. The company will use it as a demonstration project highlighting PV use and benefits for powering data centers. The PV array consists of 64 Sharp solar panels. Supporting contractors of the project include Skanska, CH2M Hill, Direct Power and Water and Klinger.

“We’re very excited about this project,” Marty Sedler, Intel’s director for global utilities and infrastructure, said. “The New Mexico solar installation will be a big step for Intel and potentially lead the way for a more aggressive solar program within Intel.”

Intel’s new solar system will be in the top 10% of solar electric facilities in the state. This system will replace an expected 907,000 pounds of carbon dioxide, by 2025, said US Environmental Protection Agency. That is similar to as much carbon dioxide produced by 919,005 miles driven in an average car.

“Intel has always stepped up to the plate,” Sandoval county Commissioner Donnie Leonard said. “Today, we celebrate not only the use of solar energy, but also Intel as a partner.”

“This is really exciting,” Rio Rancho city Councilor Delma Petrullo said. “Intel has been the forerunner of so many things and this is what Mother Nature wants. She wants us to use her, not abuse her. We need to ensure that there is balance and harmony for many centuries.”

Intel technology manufacturing group vice president and Rio Rancho’s Fab 11X manager Tim Hendry said this is only the begining of the company using solar.

“Intel is committed to conserving energy through designing energy efficient products, conserving energy in our operations, investing in renewable energy and advancing renewable energy policies,” Hendry said. “This PV array, while providing only a fraction of the energy used by our site, is the beginning of our solar program.”