SOMERVILLE, TN – Chickasaw Electric Cooperative is pleased to announce the completion of system improvements between the cooperative’s Dancyville substation and the West Tennessee Solar Farm in Haywood County. The upgraded line was energized on Wednesday morning, Dec. 14, and the cooperative is ready to receive power from the 4.5 MW solar farm. The completion comes 11 weeks ahead of schedule.
Energy produced by the West Tennessee Solar Farm will travel across nine miles of distribution line to Chickasaw Electric Cooperative’s Dancyville substation where TVA will receive the energy and use it to meet the power needs of the Tennessee Valley.
Chickasaw Electric Cooperative upgraded capacity on seven miles of existing line and constructed two miles of new line to reach the site. Additional upgrades were required at the substation to accommodate the output of the solar farm.
“The project was funded by a grant from the Department of Energy,” says Chickasaw Electric Cooperative General Manager John Collins. “Chickasaw members will not pay for the improvements but will benefit from increased capacity and an upgraded substation. These enhancements will improve reliability in that part of our service area.”
Chickasaw Electric Cooperative worked with the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development and the University of Tennessee Research Foundation, and both groups complimented the cooperative’s commitment to the project.
“Chickasaw Electric Cooperative completed the interconnection ahead of schedule, and thanks to their great work we hope to begin generating clean solar power by the new year,” said Dr. David Millhorn, UT executive vice president. “We appreciate their partnership and could not have completed the project without them.”
“Congratulations to Chickasaw Electric for reaching this important milestone for the West Tennessee Solar Farm,” said Molly Cripps, director, Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development Energy Division. “In addition to energizing the line to the farm ahead of schedule, Chickasaw Electric has served as a valuable partner on the project, and I am grateful for their hard work.”
“We completed this project ahead of schedule and on budget, and our employees are to be commended,” says Collins. “We have some extremely talented and hard-working people here at Chickasaw.”