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Apple to reportedly build giant 20 Megawatt solar farm for Reno datacenter

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
In its ongoing efforts to be a "green company," Apple will reportedly deploy a large solar array to power its datacenter in Reno, N.V., with current plans calling for a new energy focusing technology to increase efficiency.

In a partnership with Nevada utility NV Energy, Apple plans to build a solar farm that will output between 18 and 20 megawatts of power, reports GigaOM. Apple's two solar arrays in Maiden, N.C. also generate around 20 MW of energy each.

Instead of using a traditional setup, Apple is working with SunPower to construct a system that uses mirrors to concentrate the sun's energy by seven times onto conventional solar panels. SunPower, which helped Apple build out its Maiden solar farms, has also been tapped to engineer the tracking technology that will sync the mirrors to follow the path of the sun for maximum efficiency.

Further, Apple is one of the first companies to take advantage of a new environmentally-friendly tariff set up by Nevada's utility commission. With its partnership with NV Energy, the company will be able to pay for the build cost. Under the tariff, NV Energy can one day opt to pay Apple to use the solar farm, or buy the array outright. In addition, Apple can expand the array in the future.

While the solar system is being installed, Apple plans to tap into local geothermal power, a clean source of energy that is reportedly abundant in the region.

Apple also issued a statement regarding the project:

All of Apple?s data centers use 100 percent renewable energy, and we are on track to meet that goal in our new Reno data center using the latest in high-efficiency concentrating solar panels. This project will not only supply renewable energy for our data center but also provide clean energy to the local power grid, through a first-of-its-kind partnership with NV Energy. When completed, the 137 acre solar array will generate approximately 43.5 million kilowatt hours of clean energy, equivalent to taking 6,400 passenger vehicles off the road per year.


Along with the first pictures of Apple's Reno datacenter and supporting facilities, AppleInsider has an in-depth look at the project here.
post #2 of 18
Waiting for Greenpeace to claim Apple is lying about its data center power consumption and they really take 4x more electricity than they claim.
post #3 of 18
Too bad the clean power is just offsetting another form of clean power. It would be nice to see more of these projects in the northwest where there is far too much dirty power being used.
post #4 of 18
Apple continues to spend more money on projects Wall Street considers a waste of profits. Apple will get no thanks for this clean energy drive. As a shareholder, I'm glad they're doing something that is important to help fight pollution. However, the hedge funds aren't too happy at all.
post #5 of 18

Good for Apple. Coal is currently 35% of US energy. Three years from now it will be less than 16%. There is no such thing as "clean" coal.

 

2,3,4...someone say something negative! 

post #6 of 18

They need all this renewable energy so they can start mining Bitcoins.

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

Reply
post #7 of 18
Could it be that Apple just might be amassing enough alternative energy knowhow that they can set up an alt energy subsidiary as another leg on the Apple stool? And given Apple's strength in running highly integrated operations, wouldn't Tesla fit perfectly in that subsidiary?
Edited by tundraboy - 7/1/13 at 8:30pm
post #8 of 18

Every once in a while, these annoying sales people, selling crap, somehow manage to get into my building, and a few months ago, one of them rang my bell, and I happened to open the door.

 

The salesperson looked like an ignorant high school kid, wearing jeans, sneakers and a cheap looking tie along with an oversized shirt and he was wondering if he could see my electric bill, claiming how the company that he worked for could save me money by switching to another energy provider.

 

When he saw that I was totally not going to be showing any random, unknown person my electric bill, and when he realized that he wasn't getting anywhere with me, he switched tactics, and started mumbling incoherently about global warming and how my current energy was dirty.

 

I promptly told him that I prefer dirty energy, I was totally fine with my current energy costs and I do not believe in global warming and that it was a fad and a tactic being used by unscrupulous politicians, liars and companies in order to make money, by scamming ignorant people. You should have seen the look on the kids face, it was priceless. I should have grabbed an iOS device that was on a table real quick and snapped a photo of that face. Total shock and disbelief.

post #9 of 18
I'm just hoping for a internal "green" charge method in apples devices, we all can dream, I have came up with a number of ideas which are now patents for apple.
post #10 of 18
Apple can make a lot of money by selling back the electricity to the grid. Most electric companies will lock you in at a price, so getting in now will mean more cash in the future.
post #11 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

I promptly told him that I prefer dirty energy, I was totally fine with my current energy costs and I do not believe in global warming and that it was a fad and a tactic being used by unscrupulous politicians, liars and companies in order to make money, by scamming ignorant people. You should have seen the look on the kids face, it was priceless. I should have grabbed an iOS device that was on a table real quick and snapped a photo of that face. Total shock and disbelief.

 

I'm not surprised he had a look of shock and disbelief on his face - meeting someone proudly displaying such wilful ignorance and twisted logic would have that effect on any intelligent person.

 

It reminds me of a time that Caroline Lucas, Britain's Green Party MP told me that she met a woman who said "I'm not voting for you, I'll vote for the BNP!" (British national Party - very right wing) Shocked, Caroline replied "..., but, but, they're so racist" to which the woman replied "Yes, well I'm a racist". It left Caroline with "Total shock and disbelief" as well.

 

Mr (I assume that you are a Mr.) Apple ][ - what then is your take on Apple's mission to reduce the carbon content of its energy supplies? Are they scared by Greenpeace? Do they simply have an eye on the PR value? Are they trying to annoy people like you? Are they wilfully opposing their shareholder obligation by wasting their money? What reason could Apple possibly have?


Edited by KiltedGreen - 7/2/13 at 1:34am
post #12 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Every once in a while, these annoying sales people, selling crap, somehow manage to get into my building, and a few months ago, one of them rang my bell, and I happened to open the door.

The salesperson looked like an ignorant high school kid, wearing jeans, sneakers and a cheap looking tie along with an oversized shirt and he was wondering if he could see my electric bill, claiming how the company that he worked for could save me money by switching to another energy provider.

When he saw that I was totally not going to be showing any random, unknown person my electric bill, and when he realized that he wasn't getting anywhere with me, he switched tactics, and started mumbling incoherently about global warming and how my current energy was dirty.

I promptly told him that I prefer dirty energy, I was totally fine with my current energy costs and I do not believe in global warming and that it was a fad and a tactic being used by unscrupulous politicians, liars and companies in order to make money, by scamming ignorant people. You should have seen the look on the kids face, it was priceless. I should have grabbed an iOS device that was on a table real quick and snapped a photo of that face. Total shock and disbelief.

Now I am totally convinced you are just a comedian that displays an outrageously caveman level comprehension of facts just to get laughs. No one can possibly be as totally uneducated as you make out to be, no one. My cat has more brains than you pretend to have, heck I think my granite counter top is less dense.

Brilliant, no idea how you do it so consistently and keep a straight 'face'.

Thanks for the laughs. You are really funny. I would suggest you add /c at the end for 'Comic'.
From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
Google Motto "You're not the customer. You're the product."
Reply
From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
Google Motto "You're not the customer. You're the product."
Reply
post #13 of 18
Hey Apple ][, you could be right. There have been many a day where the scientists turned out wrong. None of the public knew they were wrong, because they didn't understand the science behind it to begin with. Whether these people are right or wrong is impossible for us to know, there are many many factors. No sense in some of these commenters getting upset, we can all draw our own conclusions.
post #14 of 18
I'm all for clean energy etc.... But I would like to know how Apple will be 100% clean energy. Will the geothermal be the backup when the sun doesn't shine or the wind dies down? If so i would like to hear more about that. My understanding is Apple is using natural gas fuel cells for backup (anyone?, Buehler?). My limited understanding, the issue with most solar/wind projects today of significant size is grid backup. To maintain grid load balance (not an easy thing... Ask the Germans), utility companies must keep backup generators online in case the random cloud comes along or the wind dies down. In effect, offsetting the 'carbon benefit' of the solar or wind generation, or as a minimum greatly increasing the cost. If anyone has other info supporting or to the contrary, please share.
Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster by your side, kid.
Reply
Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster by your side, kid.
Reply
post #15 of 18

Energy efficiency reduces operating costs, that increases profits.

 

Which Wall Street loves.

 

As to how you run a solar power system in a net positive fashion it's in the arithmetic: say you build up twice the capacity you need for daylight operations, then during the day feed the excess (and get paid for it at peak usage prices) to the grid while at night pull back what's needed from the grid and pay low usage hours rates. Essentially using the grid as a storage system while making some extra money on the side. Other storage systems exist as well but this one may be the simplest, and most cost effective.

 

As an end user and not either a national grid or an energy utility Apple doesn't face the issues of an entire national energy system.


Edited by jfc1138 - 7/2/13 at 9:05am
post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by KiltedGreen View Post

Caroline Lucas, Britain's Green Party MP told me that she met a woman who said "I'm not voting for you, I'll vote for the BNP!" (British national Party - very right wing) Shocked, Caroline replied "..., but, but, they're so racist" to which the woman replied "Yes, well I'm a racist". It left Caroline with "Total shock and disbelief" as well.

You vote for the party that promises to sort out the issues that affect you the most. More people are directly affected by illegal immigration and religious extremists than green issues that may or may not be true. The BNP have had African, Sikh and Indian members for years. They aren't racist. Anyway, to get away from your left-wing rant...

 

Solar powering data centres makes sense, They'll eventually save money not buying power and selling unused power back to the power company.

post #17 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evilution View Post

Solar powering data centres makes sense, They'll eventually save money not buying power and selling unused power back to the power company.

 

Perhaps the economics has changed, but as recently as a 2-3 years ago a company I worked for that had a very strong incentive to reduce power costs could not justify solar for their data center(s). One of which is in the sunniest places in the country.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

Reply

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

Reply
post #18 of 18

What kind of state is N.V.? Would that be Ne Vada?

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