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Walton EMC and Silicon Ranch commission solar farm for Facebook's Newton Data Center

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Energy Global,

Facebook's first solar project in the state of Georgia, US, is now operational. Facebook representatives joined Walton Electric Membership Corporation (Walton EMC) and Silicon Ranch today to 'flip the switch' on the 102.5 MW AC solar facility in a special ceremony at the project site. State and local officials joined more than 100 guests to help celebrate the milestone achievement.

Facebook chose Walton EMC as the power supplier for its data centre when it announced the facility in March 2018. As part of its agreement to supply 100% renewable energy for the Newton Data Center, Walton EMC announced a contract in December 2018 with Silicon Ranch.

The resulting solar project has yielded tangible economic benefits across the state. To support Facebook's data centre and corresponding investments, Silicon Ranch has employed more than 675 people to assemble and install single-axis trackers that utilise NEXTracker's TrueCapture smart control system, enabling more than 350 000 solar modules to track the sun from east to west across more than 1200 acres. The locally-sourced modules were among the first produced by Hanwha Q CELLS at its new manufacturing facility in Whitfield County.

In November 2019, Walton EMC announced a second agreement with Silicon Ranch on behalf of Facebook to support the Newton Data Center with renewable energy. The 107 MW AC facility will be located in southeast Georgia, and is scheduled to come online in 2021.

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