SunPower Corporation (SPWRA) announced that it will design and construct a 1-megawatt solar power system at the Yolo County Justice Center in Woodland, California.

Yolo County, which will own the system and associated renewable energy credits, is financing the purchase using multiple funding sources, including clean renewable energy bonds and qualified energy conservation bonds. The bonds were financed by Bank of America (BAC). It also assisted the county in securing a 15-year loan from the California Energy Commission.

The solar power system is expected to be operational by Sep 2010 and will utilize SunPower solar panels. SunPower’s solar panels are automated to follow the sun’s movement during the day, increasing sunlight capture by up to 25% over conventional fixed-tilt systems, while significantly reducing land use requirements.

According to conversion formulas provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the solar power system is expected to get rid of more than 2.2 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions each year, equivalent to the emissions by over 5,700 cars on California’s roads over the 30-year life of the system.

Headquartered in San Jose, California, SunPower designs, develops, manufactures, markets and sells high-performance solar electric power technology products, systems and services worldwide for residential, commercial and utility-scale power plant customers.

The company’s semiconductor-based solar cells and solar panels, which convert sunlight into electricity, are manufactured using proprietary processes and technologies.

The fortunes of SunPower appear strong, given the reviving prospects of the alternative energy industry, and specifically solar power energy, higher captive generation of panels, rising average conversion efficiency, declining silicon cost and assured silicon supply. Furthermore, state RPS requirements, stimulus plan and ITC grant, increase the visibility of the SunPower story in U.S.

However potential downsides include oversupply of modules in the market, subsidy risk in Germany and Italy, and failure to keep up in the technology race. Thus we maintain our market Neutral recommendation on the shares.
Read the full analyst report on “SPWRA”
Read the full analyst report on “BAC”
Zacks Investment Research