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Tucson Electric Power Plans 6-Megawatt SunPower C7 Tracker System

TUCSON, Ariz. and SAN JOSE, Calif., Sept. 11, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Reinforcing its commitment to promote the use of renewable energy, Tucson Electric Power (TEP) has modified an existing agreement with SunPower Corp. (NASDAQ: SPWR) to incorporate six megawatts of its new C7 Tracker technology into a planned facility that will also include two megawatts of SunPower's T5 Solar Roof Tile technology. The SunPower C7 Tracker is a solar photovoltaic tracking system that concentrates the sun's power seven times and, when at scale, can deliver the lowest levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) for utility-scale solar power plants.

"TEP is committed to maintaining its leadership role in the development of solar energy in Southern Arizona by utilizing new and innovative technologies," said Carmine Tilghman, director of renewable resources and programs at TEP and its parent company, UNS Energy Corp. (NYSE: UNS). "SunPower's C7 Tracker provides us a great opportunity to expand our solar development while providing our customers with cost-effective renewable energy.

"This project, which will be owned by TEP, will assist the company in reaching its goal of incorporating more than 200 megawatts of solar energy into its system by the end of 2013," Tilghman added.

"TEP is leading the way by utilizing proven solar technology with the best economics over the long term," said Howard Wenger, SunPower president, regions. "The SunPower C7 Tracker leverages two decades of experience in reliable tracking systems to deliver bankable technology, guaranteed performance and the greatest return on investment for utility customers."

The C7 Tracker combines single-axis tracking technology with rows of parabolic mirrors, reflecting light onto 22.8 percent efficient SunPower Maxeon™ solar cells, which are the world's most efficient commercially available solar cells.  Using mirrors to reduce the number of solar cells required to generate electricity lowers the LCOE by up to 20 percent compared to competing technologies. For example, a 400-megawatt C7 Tracker power plant requires less than 70 megawatts of SunPower solar cells. 

The C7 Tracker includes modular solar cell receivers allowing for future performance upgrades. Additionally, the SunPower advanced Tracker Monitoring and Control System (TMAC™) provides wireless control of the power plant for increased operating efficiency and reduced maintenance cost. SunPower can rapidly deploy regional manufacturing of the system, supporting local job creation.

The C7 Tracker is ideal for regions with high solar irradiance through direct sunlight, including the U.S. Southwest and areas of the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia and Australia.

The C7 Tracker installation for TEP will begin construction in January 2013, and is expected to be operational by December 2013.

This agreement modifies a previous agreement under which SunPower was contracted to deliver 11 megawatts of rooftop solar technology to TEP.

About Tucson Electric Power
Tucson Electric Power provides safe, reliable service to more than 404,000 customers in southern Arizona. TEP was recognized this year as the 2012 Investor Owned Utility (IOU) of the Year by The Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA) for the company's leadership and continued investment in solar energy. To learn more about TEP's solar energy programs, visit tep.com. For more information about UNS Energy, visit uns.com.

About SunPower Corp.
SunPower Corp. (NASDAQ: SPWR) designs, manufactures and delivers the highest efficiency, highest reliability solar panels and systems available today. Residential, business, government and utility customers rely on the company's quarter century of experience and guaranteed performance to provide maximum return on investment throughout the life of the solar system. Headquartered in San Jose, Calif., SunPower has offices in North America, Europe, Australia, Africa and Asia. For more information, visit www.sunpowercorp.com.

Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are statements that do not represent historical facts. SunPower uses words and phrases such as "plans," "will," "expected," and similar expressions to identify forward-looking statements, including statements regarding: (a) the plan to install 6MW of C7 Tracker system for TEP and 2MW of T5 system; and (b) the expected construction and operational date for the project. Such forward-looking statements are based on information available to SunPower as of the date of this press release and involve a number of risks and uncertainties, some beyond SunPower's control, that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated by these forward-looking statements, including risks and uncertainties such as: (i) construction difficulties or potential delays in the project implementation process; (ii) unanticipated delays or difficulties securing necessary permits, licenses or other governmental approvals; (iii) the continuation of existing and enactment of new federal and state government economic incentives promoting the use of solar power; (iv) the significant investment required to construct projects and the company's ability to sell or otherwise monetize projects; (v) the risk of continuation of supply of products and components from suppliers; (vi) unanticipated problems with deploying the systems on the site; (vii) actual electricity generation; and (viii) other risks described in the company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended January 1, 2012 and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for the quarters ended April 1, 2012 and July 1, 2012, and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing the company's views as of any subsequent date, and the company is under no obligation to, and expressly disclaims any responsibility to, update or alter its forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

SunPower is a registered trademark of SunPower Corp.  All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

SOURCE SunPower Corp.

For further information: Ingrid Ekstrom, SunPower Corp., +1-510-260-8368, iekstrom@sunpowercorp.com; or Joseph Barrios, Tucson Electric Power, +1-520-884-3725, jbarrioa@tep.com