The suspension leaves BrightSource with only one project under consideration by the Calif. Energy Commission (CEC): the 500-MW Palen Solar Electric Generating Station, which had been approved by the CEC for a radically different design by previous owner Solar Millennium. BrightSource's soon to be completed Ivanpah project is the only solar power generating project on which the company has broken ground in California, although the firm has built a smaller facility near Coalinga. (Source: Brightsource, California Energy Commission, KCET, 3 April, 2013) Contact: BrightSource Energy, (510) 550-8161, www.brightsourceenergy.com; Pacific Gas & Electric, www.pge.com
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Many German solar manufactures have struggled under the weight of cheap foreign competition and reduced government aid , all of which has flooded the solar panel market. Q-Cells, once the biggest solar-cell maker, Solon SE (SOO1), Solar Millennium AG (S2M) and Solarhybrid AG (SHL) have all filed for insolvency since December, 2012. (Source: Q-Cells, Bloomberg, 23 April, 2012)
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BrightSource's IPO had been seen as a test of Big Solar's interest to investors but the solar market has been uneven as Germany and Spain ratcheted back subsidies while the future of renewable energy incentives in the U.S. has been caught up in presidential election-year politics. In addition, as solar panel prices have plummeted, Chinese photovoltaic module makers grabbed a large share of the U.S. market. With a 75% fall in solar panel prices over the past three years, utilities in California, the largest U.S. solar market, have favored photovoltaic projects over the solar thermal facilities built by companies like BrightSource.
Against that less than encouraging backdrop, BrightSource's solar thermal competitors Solar Millennium of Germany and U.S. startup Stirling Energy Systems filed for bankruptcy in recent months. BrightSource Energy, which is well capitalized and the recipient of a $1.6 billion federal loan guarantee, seemed a likely candidate to be one of the few solar thermal start-ups left standing.
(Source: Bright Source, April, 11, 2012) Contact: BrightSource Energy, Charles Ricker, SVP, Business Development, (510) 550-8161 ext 108, [email protected], www.brightsourceenergy.com
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Solar Millennium AG operates globally and specializes in solar-thermal power plants, particularly parabolic trough plants. The Company covers all important business sectors along the value chain for solar power plants: from project development and financing to technology, plant construction, and turnkey operations.
Solar Millennium realized Europe's first parabolic trough power plants in Spain as well as the first modern parabolic trough solar field in Egypt. Additional projects are planned around the world. The current regional focus is on Spain, the Middle East and North Africa. (Source: Solar Millennium, November, 14, 2011)Contact: Dr. Christoph Wolff, CEO, Solar Millennium, +49 (0)9131 9409-0, www.solarmillennium.com
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To that end, the Company established an R&D team last year to work on solar tower systems,
especially in combination with parabolic troughs.
The company says it wants to use solar tower PV as a supplement to its parabolic trough technology, for the commercial use of uneven terrain or border areas of the project locations.
(Source: Solar Millennium, Recharge News, May, 19, 2011)
Contact: Dr. Christoph Wolff, CEO, Solar Millennium, +49 (0)9131 9409-0, www.solarmillennium.com
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The draft term sheet is an important financial milestone in the realization of what will be the world's largest solar facility and a significant catalyst to the development of a manufacturing supply chain for solar thermal technology in the U.S.
Blythe is fully permitted for up to four 250 megawatt (MW) plants delivering a total 1,000 MW of solar capacity to the grid; or enough electricity to annually power more than 300,000 single-family homes. The draft term sheet corresponds with the development of the first two of four power plants.
Solar Trust is seeking to finance the first two units at Blythe (combined capacity of 500 MW) in 2011 utilizing the Department of Energy's loan guarantee program. John Clapp, Solar Trust of America's Chief Financial Officer, said that receipt of the term sheet is an important milestone as the DOE and Solar Trust work towards a conditional commitment and eventual financial close for the financing of the first two units at Blythe.
According to DOE statistics, upon completion, the Blythe facility will increase the solar electricity production capacity of the U.S. by more than double. (Source: Newswire, November 23,2010)
Contact: Uwe T. Schmidt, Chairman and CEO of Solar Trust of America and Executive Chairman of project development subsidiary Solar Millennium, LLC., (216) 763-8050,www.solartrustofamerica.com
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The two 250-megawatt plants will be built by Solar Millennium, a German manufacturer of parabolic-shaped concentrated solar panels. Each plant will include a thermal energy storage system so that it can continue to supply electricity during unfavorable conditions. A percentage of solar-generated electricity will power buildings in Las Vegas. When complete, the project should supply enough electricity to power 150,000 U.S. homes annually.
Including the Amargosa project, Solar Millennium now has the potential to build 1,500 megawatts worth of solar energy projects in the U.S.(Source: Cnet, November 17,2010)
Contact: Solar Millennium, 49 0 9131 9409-0, www.solarmillennium.de
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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 project will use parabolic trough technology and its output will be generated by four independent 250 MW units, with the estimated cost of the first two units being $3 billion. Through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Solar Millennium is eligible to secure $1.9 billion in conditional loan guarantees from the U.S. DOE for this project. (Source: BLM, October 25, 2010)
Contact: David Quick, Bureau of Land Management, (202) 912-7413, www.blm.gov; Solar Millennium, +49 (0) 9131 94 090, [email protected], www.solarmillennium.de
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