June 23, 2014
An audio-headset factory in Tijuana, Mexico, is now home to the largest, privately owned roof-mounted solar installation in all of Latin America. The 1.16-megawatt system features solar panels, racking and system engineering from SolarWorld, the largest solar manufacturer in the Americas for nearly 40 years.
The system will power the Mexico operations of Plantronics, a global producer of audio communications headphones. The project is the second of SolarWorld solar panels at a Plantronics facility. In 2011, the headset manufacturer installed 608 kilowatts of roof-mounted and carport-mounted solar arrays at its headquarters in Santa Cruz, Calif.
'Being responsible with the environment is not a luxury, it is a commitment,' said César López, director of government relations for Plantronics Tijuana. 'As part of that commitment, it was important to us to select SolarWorld solar panels and racking, which are manufactured in North America according to the highest standards of quality, safety and sustainability.'
Developed and installed by 3Tek Solar, a solar integrator based in Tijuana, the system is composed of 4,284 high-performance SolarWorld solar panels. About 1.14 megawatts of those panels are mounted on the factory's industrial metal-seam roof using SolarWorld's Sunfix Plus racking product. An additional 20 kilowatts are installed atop a covered walkway at the factory's entrance. The system also features SMA Sunny Central inverters.
The installation is expected to produce 1.9 gigawatt hours of renewable energy each year. The power output will offset about 70 percent of Plamex's energy needs at the Tijuana plant and save nearly 3 million pounds of carbon dioxide.
'Industrial building design is all about maximizing long-term operations by reducing energy costs and managing natural resources,' said Hector Montoya, director of 3Tek Solar. '3Tek Solar has supplied Plantronics with design-build services for the past 15 years. We are grateful to Plantronics for trusting 3Tek Solar to successfully deliver a project of this magnitude - the largest of its kind in Mexico - on schedule and within budget.'
SolarWorld has supplied solar panels, mounting solutions and complete solar systems for both on- and off-grid applications to customers in Latin America since the late 1970s. Through its Solar2World program, which supports community rural-electrification projects in developing economies, SolarWorld also has donated panels to power hospitals, medical clinics and water-treatment facilities in Haiti, Peru, Mexico and Honduras.
'As a company with business ties to Latin America dating back more than 30 years, SolarWorld has long understood that solar power is an essential part of the region's energy mix,' said Mukesh Dulani, U.S. president of SolarWorld. 'We're pleased to team with longtime partners, like 3Tek SOLAR and Plantronics, to expand the reach and profile of solar energy in Mexico's fast-emerging market.'
SolarWorld AG manufactures solar power systems and in doing so contributes to a cleaner energy supply worldwide. The company, located in Bonn, employs approximately 2,500 people and carries out production in Freiberg, Germany, and Hillsboro, USA. From raw material silicon to the solar module, SolarWorld manages all stages of production - including its own research and development. Through an international distribution network, SolarWorld supplies customers all over the world with solar modules and complete systems. The company maintains high social standards at all locations across the globe, and has committed itself to resource- and energy-efficient production. SolarWorld has been publicly traded on the stock market since 1999. More information at www.solarworld-usa.com.
About 3Tek Solar
3Tek Construction is a recognized contractor in the Baja region that has been serving its clients, both industrial and commercial, for 20 plus years. Their solar integrator division -3Tek SOLAR- was created to serve Mexico's ever growing demand for sustainable energy options.
3Tek SOLAR offers Integrated EPC Service that ensures its client's satisfaction from beginning to end. Their all encompassing technical support includes project development and permit procurement from government agencies.
3Tek SOLAR possesses the know-how and experience to serve all solar energy needs with the added benefits of builder knowledge and expertise.
Plantronics is a world leader in personal audio communications for professionals and consumers. From unified communications solutions to Bluetooth headsets, Plantronics delivers unparalleled audio experiences and quality that reflect our nearly 50 years of innovation and customer commitment. With offices in 20 countries Plantronics is used by every company in the Fortune 100 and is the headset of choice for air traffic control, 911 dispatch and the New York stock exchange.
Plamex, Plantronics' Tijuana-based manufacturing plant for over 31 years, employs 3,000 people and is regarded as an example to plants worldwide. It has won many awards including the coveted 'Best place to work' in 2011 and is widely recognized for its environmental leadership and commitment. In 2003, Plamex achieved the Certification for Excellence in Safety and Environmental Practices awarded by Mexico's Federal Ministry of Labor. Plamex is certified in ISO 9001, ISO 14001, CTPAT, FAST, PAPS, DOT and CHP. Plamex has received numerous awards and commendations for its excellence in environmental matters, community work, customer satisfaction and work safety.
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