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Bechtel completes Catalina Solar PV Project (Ind. Report)
Date: 2013-08-26
International construction giant Bechtel announced today that it has completed the design and construction of the 110-MW , alternating-current Catalina Solar Photovoltaic Generating Facility in Southern California's Kern County. The facility, one of the world's largest, will produce enough clean energy to power some 35,000 homes.

In addition to the Catalina Solar project, Bechtel is building two other solar facilities in California: the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating Facility, which will be the world's largest concentrating solar thermal (CSP) power facility when complete, and the California Valley Solar Ranch, one of the world's largest photovoltaic facilities which is currently under construction. (Source: Bechtel, 26 August, 2013) Contact: Bechtel, www.bechtel.com

Tags Bechtel news,  Solar news,  PV news,  CSP news,  

eSolar, Ferrostaal Partnering on Solar Thermal Projects (Ind. Report)
eSolar, Ferrostaal
Date: 2012-12-21
Ferrostaal AG and California headquartered concentrating solar thermal power technology specialist eSolar are partnering to deploy turnkey solar power plants in Spain, the UAE Emirates, and South Africa. eSolar will provide solar field and receiver technology and while Ferrostaal AG will handle financing, provide the power block as well as act as individual project general contractor.

eSolar's Sierra SunTower, a 5 MW commercial-scale solar power plant in Lancaster, California, is the only power tower facility presently operating in North America. eSolar presently has three licensing agreements across three continents.

Ferrostaal's current concentrating solar thermal portfolio includes parabolic trough and Fresnel lens. (Source: eSolar, Solar Novus, Dec. 18, 2012) Contact: eSolar, John Van Scoter, CEO , (808) 303-9500, info@esolar.com, www.esolar.com; Ferrostaal AG, www.ferrostaal.com

Tags Ferrostaal news,  eSolar news,  CSP news,  Solar news,  

BrightSource, SCE Add Energy Storage to Solar PPAs (Ind. Report)
BrightSource Energy,Southern California Edison
Date: 2011-11-30
Solar thermal technology specialist BrightSource Energy Inc. reports the addition of its SolarPLUS™ thermal energy storage capability to three of its power purchase agreements (PPAs) with Southern California Edison (SCE). The PPAs illustrate the critical value of highly-efficient power tower solar thermal technology with storage in providing utility customers with cost-competitive, reliable and dispatchable power that meets peak demand. By adding storage to its solar thermal power plants, BrightSource is able to further reduce the total cost of energy by increasing its capacity factor extending the production of electricity into later parts of the day during periods of high demand.

Recent studies by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory point to the high value of concentrating solar thermal power technologies with storage. This added value is a result of the resource's unique capabilities including:

  • Shifting electricity production to periods of highest demand
  • Providing firm capacity to the power system; replacing the need for conventional power plants as opposed to just supplementing their output
  • Providing ancillary services such as spinning reserves to help support a reliable grid
  • Avoiding the variability and integration costs that other renewable resources like photovoltaics (PV) and wind create for utilities and grid operators; reducing the need for additional fossil fuel units required to back up intermittent renewables that put a hidden financial burden on ratepayers.

    To mitigate these integration costs, energy regulators, utilities, grid operators and policymakers are focusing their attention on advancing deployment of energy storage technologies. California recently passed Assembly Bill 2514, landmark legislation designed to encourage the adoption of energy storage technologies. Under the original power purchase agreements with SCE, BrightSource would provide approximately four million megawatt-hours of electricity annually across seven power plants. Due to higher efficiencies and capacity factors associated with energy storage, the new set of agreements will provide approximately the same amount of energy annually but with one less plant., reducing the land impacts of delivering this energy The new set of contracts, if approved by the California PUC, now consist of two BrightSource solar thermal plants scheduled to deliver electricity in 2015 and three BrightSource plants with energy storage scheduled to deliver electricity in 2016 and 2017. In addition, BrightSource and its partners -- NRG Energy, Google and Bechtel - are currently constructing a 126 megawatt plant for Southern California Edison at the Ivanpah solar project in southeast California. (Source: BrightSource, November, 28, 2011)Contact: BrightSource Energy, Charles Ricker, SVP, Business Development, (510) 550-8161 ext 108, cricker@brightsourceenergy.com, www.brightsourceenergy.com

    Tags BrightSource Energy news,  Southern California Edison news,  Concentrating Solar news,  Energy Storage news,  

  • GE Investing up to $40 million in eSolar (Ind. Report, Funding)
    GE Energy,eSolar
    Date: 2011-08-11
    Concentrating solar thermal power technology developer eSolar reports that in addition to its licensing agreement with GE Energy, GE has closed a strategic investment in the Burbank, California-based company.

    GE recently unveiled its Integrated Solar Combined Cycle (ISCC) power plant that couples eSolar's innovative solar thermal technology with GE's fleet of combined cycle products. When combined with GE's recently announced FlexEfficiency 50 Combined Cycle Power Plant technology, ISCC power plants are capable of delivering fuel efficiencies in excess of 70 percent.

    Through a licensing agreement, GE was granted exclusive worldwide rights to eSolar's modular technology for ISCC, excluding China and India. Together, the two companies are targeting Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the United States, and are working on a 530 MW project in Turkey with Turkish investor and power project developer MetCap Energy, which will feature 50 MW of eSolar concentrated solar thermal tower technology integrated with GE's new FlexEfficiency 50 Combined Cycle Power Plant. eSolar is working to evaluate additional projects which the company expects to announce in the near future.

    eSolar's power plant technology uses small, flat, pre-fabricated mirrors called heliostats to track the sun and reflect its heat to a tower-mounted receiver. This generates steam that is used by the ISCC plant's power block to create electricity. Thousands of heliostats are aligned and controlled using advanced software algorithms to precisely focus the sun's energy. eSolar's technology is architected to provide modular, prefabricated fields that maximize energy production, are scalable to meet a wide range of customers' power generation needs, while also enabling rapid, lower cost deployment. (Source: eSolar, August, 8, 2011) Contact: Dale Rogers, SVP Projects, eSolar, (818) 303-9500, www.esolar.com

    More Energy Overviews eSolar news,  GE Energy news,  Concentrating Solar news,  

    EPRI Assesses Status of 8 Key Power Generation Technologies - Report Attached (Ind. Report)
    Date: 2011-07-19
    The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) released a report today on the near- and long-term cost, performance, and technology status for eight central-station power generation technologies likely to dominate the U.S. generation mix over the next two decades. The analysis, Integrated Generation Technology Options, examines pulverized coal, integrated gasification combined-cycle (IGCC), natural gas combined-cycle (NGCC), nuclear, biomass, wind, solar photovoltaic (PV), and concentrating solar thermal generation technologies from the near term to 2025.

    The report presents an overview of each technology, including current and projected performance and costs; major technical issues and future development direction and trends; fuel resource considerations; business issues; and environmental concerns and considerations. Representative costs are reported in constant December 2010 U.S. dollars. "This assessment is designed to inform the public and utility power producers as they grapple with uncertainties that complicate decisions about generation technology investments," said Revis James, Director of EPRI's Energy Technology Assessment Center, which conducted the analysis. Those complicating factors include:

  • The lagging economic recovery and its impacts on electricity demand
  • Capital cost uncertainties surrounding the various technologies
  • Uncertainty regarding potential carbon legislation
  • The profound impact of the shale gas boom on present and future natural gas prices, and
  • Impacts on existing generating plants from pending or anticipated environmental rules on emissions, use of water resources, and coal ash handling and disposal. The analysis is based on 2010 EPRI research results and updates a November 2009 assessment. (Source: EPRI, July, 18, 2011)

    Download HERE Contact: EPRI, Clay Perry, (202) 293-6184, clperry@epri.com, www.epri.com

    More Energy Overviews EPRI news,  

  • Solvine plans 500-KW Concentrating Solar Thermal project in New Mexico (Ind. Report)
    Date: 2011-04-29
    South Korean company Solvine plans to invest $6 million in a 500-kilowatt concentrating solar thermal generating system to power the city of Belen, New Mexico's wastewater treatment plant.

    Andrew DiCamillo, Belen's planning and economic development director, said a Solvine delegation visited the plant on April 21 to survey the 4-acre site and finalize logistics with the city. The system will be manufactured by Washington-based Infinia Corp., which installed a 3-KW "PowerDish" at Belen's City Hall last year. The PowerDish uses solar heat to run a Stirling engine. The system produces a pressure pulse which activates an alternator to generate electricity. Solvine has concluded talks with Infinia to purchase the system, DiCamillo said.

    Solvine will install and operate the system for six years under a third-party power-purchase agreement. In the seventh year, Belen will buy the system back from Solvine for $2.7 million.

    Similar arrangements are becoming common in the solar industry, because they resolve the inability of government institutions and nonprofit organizations to access state and federal tax breaks when installing solar systems.

    Under a third-party agreement, the developer owns the system and accesses the tax breaks. The customer, in this case the City of Belen, ends up paying considerably less for the solar energy produced than would otherwise be paid for energy from the grid.

    The third party benefits by accessing the tax breaks and the renewable energy credits, or solar incentives, that PNM pays to solar-system owners for the energy they generate.

    Although the application for those credits is still pending at PNM, DiCamillo expects Solvine to earn 10 cents per kilowatt hour from the utility. When the city takes over the system, those REC payments will revert to Belen. The solar system will supply all the power needed to run the wastewater treatment plant when the sun is shining, DiCamillo said. The plant serves more than 3,500 homes and all businesses and government buildings in Belen.(Source: Solvine, Heli SCSP, April, 27,2011)

    More Energy Overviews Concentrating Solar Thermal news,  

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