November 1, 2007 in Business

GreenVolts panels online

By The Spokesman-Review
File photo

Ecolite Manufacturing Co. CEO Ed Caferro observes a CarouSol solar power system his company was building for San Francisco-based GreenVolts Inc. in June. A GreenVolts system has since been installed in Rathdrum and is generating energy, the company says.
(Full-size photo)

A GreenVolts Inc. solar power system manufactured by a Spokane Valley company and installed at an Avista Utilities test bed for renewable resources is generating energy, GreenVolts announced Tuesday.

San Francisco-based GreenVolts earlier this year announced plans to install a roughly 2.4-kilowatt sun-tracking solar array, built by Ecolite Manufacturing Co., at Avista’s facility in Rathdrum. A GreenVolts spokesman declined to say how much electricity is being generated.

GreenVolts boasts the system, which concentrates sunlight on photovoltaic cells, “requires less land while producing twice the energy at half the cost” compared with traditional solar panels.

GreenVolts also announced it has secured $10 million in investment funding, including money from Avista Corp. That investment, an addition to the company’s prior investment in GreenVolts, was “not a huge amount of money” and will not affect customers or shareholders, said utility spokesman Hugh Imhof.

“GreenVolts has shown steady progress on this promising technology with its keen focus on serving utilities and disciplined approach to product development,” said Roger Woodworth, Avista’s vice president for sustainable energy solutions and a strategic adviser to GreenVolts. “We’re pleased to continue our support as a minority investor in GreenVolts and its capable leadership team.”

Honolulu-based Sopogy Inc. has also installed several of its concentrated solar power units at the Rathdrum site, Imhof said.

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