Fuel Displacement

First Solar's FuelSmart™ Solutions

Solutions /  Fuel Displacement

Fuel Displacement Solutions

Solar is cheaper than diesel. With fixed pricing and no fuel-price volatility, solar represents a meaningful value proposition for anyone burning liquid fuel as their primary energy source. First Solar’s FuelSmart™ solutions combine photovoltaic (PV) solar generation with a fossil fuel engine generator to reduce fuel consumption and save costs.

Think of solar as a source of fuel, not just additional generation capacity. PV hybrid systems are designed to operate as a secondary power source to reduce fuel consumption and are not intended to replace the existing thermal infrastructure.

  • Reduce fuel consumption and save costs
  • Reduce the risk of fuel-price volatility
  • Increase energy independence
  • Reduce CO2 emissions and exposure to increased air quality and sound regulations
  • Reduce generator operating time and increase operational life

Our FuelSmart™ hybrid solutions are designed to capitalize on the value of solar while ensuring reliable system integration and plant operations. In this capacity, the PV plant serves as a secondary power source and seamlessly integrates with the existing thermal infrastructure to maintain dependable operations.

Our FuelSmart™ solutions present a meaningful value proposition for a wide variety of customers. From utilities and grid operators, oil and gas, and mining, to desalination, agriculture, and industrial industries, anyone relying on expensive liquid fuels can reduce their fuel consumption and reduce their variable costs.

Thermal generators currently match fluctuations in the load automatically. Our hybrid system simply connects to the AC bus to reduce the fuel requirements of the existing generators, saving money without impacting reliability.


How Hybrid Systems Work

There are multiple options for control system integration with the thermal plant’s master control system. First Solar collaborates with customers and OEM’s to configure the ideal solution for each project, depending on site-specific load conditions and desired PV penetration.

In addition to providing turnkey PV Hybrid systems, we also offer alternative commercial structures to help customers realize the value of solar and reduce their fuel costs.

First Solar FuelSmart™ PPA

  • Capitalize on the value of solar with zero upfront capital investment
  • Pay only for the energy produced each month
  • Lowest level of risk; does not include plant ownership

First Solar FuelSmart™ Transfer

  • Includes upfront capital investment and monthly operational expenses
  • Total plant ownership after specified term
  • Lowest level of risk for plant ownership

First Solar FuelSmart™ Lease

  • Includes upfront investment, monthly expenses, and residual payment
  • Payments spread over a longer term
  • Residual payment due at end of term to own plant