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Applied Materials Plans Largest Corporate Solar Power System in U.S.

Applied Materials announced it will install the largest solar power installation on an existing corporate facility in the U.S. The plan calls for over 1.9 megawatts of solar power generation capability at its research campus in Sunnyvale, California.

“When the project is complete we will have a silent, non-polluting 1.9 megawatt power plant on what is currently open roof space and parking areas, and a great hedge against future energy cost increases,” said Mike Splinter, president and CEO of Applied Materials.

Applied Materials will start installing panels later this year that use a variety of solar technologies. Once completed in 2008, Applied Materials’ system will generate over 2,330 megawatt hours annually -? the equivalent of powering 1,400 homes.

The company recently announced that it would purchase 8,220,000 kilowatt-hours of renewable energy annually from wind and solar generation sources in California.

This is the latest in a long line of recent solar announcements. Costco has installed its second solar-powered energy system at its Lake Elsinore, California warehouse. Staples recently unveiled the largest solar power installation in New England at its 300,000-square-foot retail distribution center in Killingly, Connecticut. Tesco, the fourth-largest retail chain in the world, is installing a $13 million solar roof on its five-building, 820,400-square-foot distribution center under construction in Riverside, California. Wal-Mart uses solar power in its experimental stores, and has addressed a large instalation in a recent RFP.  Google is planning a 1.6 megawatt installation at its Mountain View, California, headquarters campus.

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