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, [email protected], www.esolar.com; Ferrostaal AG, www.ferrostaal.com
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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:
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, [email protected], www.brightsourceenergy.com
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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
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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:
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)
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The Nevada National Security Site will serve as a proving ground for cutting-edge solar technologies, such as concentrating solar thermal power and concentrating photovoltaic energy, which can be used for utility applications in the Southwestern United States where potential solar resources are abundant.
"This funding will allow the Department to further test advanced and innovative solar energy technologies in real-world conditions, providing critical data for companies and communities looking to invest in large-scale solar projects," said Secretary Chu. "The Solar Demonstration Zone in Nevada is part of an integrated effort to expand the solar energy industry, helping to put America on a path to a sustainable energy future and create the jobs of the 21st century economy."
The Department expects to publicize the Funding Opportunity Announcement early next year. Potential technology applications include Concentrated Solar Power systems that use mirrors to reflect and concentrate sunlight on a heat absorbing fluid, convert it to steam, and ultimately generate electricity, as well as Concentrated Photovoltaic Power that uses lenses to concentrate sunlight to improve the efficiency of conventional photovoltaics. The demonstration projects as part of the Solar Demonstration Zone will be deployed at a large enough scale to provide useful operating and economic data for the eventual deployment of solar energy projects at utility-scale, which are typically grid-connected projects larger than 20 megawatts.
The Solar Demonstration Zone at the Nevada National Security Site will complement the Department of Interior's Bureau of Land Management's 24 Solar Energy Study Areas (SESAs) on public lands across the Southwest United States by providing essential data about the commercial viability of the most advanced solar technologies.
As part of DOE and the Department of Interior's continuing collaboration, the Departments are working together to implement this project, including conducting environmental reviews and coordinating necessary infrastructure planning for the site. Department of Energy funding for the project is dependent upon congressional appropriations. (Source: DOE, December 16,2010)
Contact: Solar Energy Technologies Program, http://www1.eere.energy.gov/solar/
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The committee also recommended approval of the 150 MW Rice Solar Energy Project proposed by a subsidiary of SolarReaser LLC, to be located 15 miles northeast of Vidal Junction. This is a concentrating solar thermal power project with a central receiver tower, sun-tracking heliostat field and an integrated thermal storage system using molten salt as the heat transfer and storage medium.
The Commission is expected to decide on both these projects before the end of 2010. (Source: CEC, November 12, 2010)
Contact: Palen Solar Project, Alan Solomon, Project Manager, Siting, Transmission and Environmental Protection (STEP) Division, California Energy Commission, (916) 653-8236, [email protected], Details; Rice Solar Project, John Kessler, Project Manager
Siting, Transmission and Environmental Protection (STEP) Division, California Energy Commission, (916) 654-4679, [email protected], Details.
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The City is contributing $3 million CDN ($2.9 million US) to the project while the provincial government of Alberta is contributing an equal amount from its portion of the Canada ecoTrust program. The province's technology fund, the Climate Change and Emissions Management Corporation, will provide the remaining $ 3 million CDN ($2.9 million US).
Construction is scheduled to begin in September, 2011 for completion in the fall of 2012. (Source: Calgary Herald, November 11 2010)
Contact: Electric Generation, City of Medicine Hat, (403) 529-8272, [email protected], www.medicinehat.ca; Climate Change and Emissions Management Corporation, http://ccemc.ca; Ogho Ikhalo, Communications, Alberta Environment, (780) 427-6267, www.alberta.ca.
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CCEMC is a not-for-profit organization with a mandate to establish or participate in funding for initiatives that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and support adaptation. This grant is part of a funding totaling $37.5 million CDN ($36.65 million US). (Source: CCEMC, June 16, 2010)
Contact: Russ Smith, Manager Energy Sustainability, City of Medicine Hat, (403) 529-8188, [email protected]; Kirk Andries, Chair, Operations Management Committee, Climate Change and Emissions Management Corporation, (780) 417-1920, [email protected], http://ccemc.ca.