A Dallas, Texas, private-equity firm, Panda Power Funds, is acquiring Moxie Energy's planned Liberty Generating Station in Bradford County, Pa., billed as the first power plant developed to use natural gas from the Marcellus Shale formation. The 829-megawatt plant will produce enough power to supply 1 million homes.

Panda will immediately start construction on the 33-acre site in Asylum Township and expects operations to begin by early 2016.

The plant will contain twin combined-cycle Siemens gas turbines, manufactured in North Carolina. The generators will be cooled with air rather than water, eliminating the plant's potential impact on the Susquehanna River.

Panda did not disclose a purchase price. It said the plant will contribute an estimated $1.2 billion to the area's economy during construction and the first decade of operation.

About 500 jobs will be created to construct the plant, which will employ 27 people to operate.

Contact Andrew Maykuth at 215-854-2947, @Maykuth or amaykuth@phillynews.com