HOLLOMAN AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. — The U.S. Air Force is teaming up with El Paso Electric to build a new solar farm that will serve Holloman Air Force Base in southern New Mexico.

Officials announced the start of construction Wednesday, saying the 5-megawatt plant will be the utility’s first renewable energy project built to serve a military installation.

The new facility will be made up of almost 56,000 thin-film modules and will generate enough electricity to power more than 1,700 homes annually.

M+W Energy, Inc. will build the plant. The project is expected to employ close to 100 workers.

Once the plant is online next year, El Paso Electric will have 115 megawatts of utility-scale solar resources in its portfolio.

El Paso Electric serves about 417,000 customers in West Texas and southern New Mexico.