Earlier today, concentrated solar company SolFocus announced that it has signed a deal to install over 10 MW of its systems in Spain for EMPE Solar. Upon its completion in 2010, the $103 million, multi-site project will be the largest concentrated solar deployment in the world. SolFocus estimates that the project will be able to meet the domestic energy requirements of 40,000 homes.
SolFocus modules use mirrors and reflective optics to concentrate the sun’s rays 500 times onto a solar cell. As a result, the systems use 1/1000 the amount of photovoltaic material typically used in PV modules.
Today’s announcement comes on the heels of a completed 3 MW SolFocus installation for the Institute of Concentration Photovoltaic Systems in Spain— a project intended to showcase the reliability, scalability, and efficiency of concentrated solar.
Those of us in the United States may not have to wait too long to reap the benefits of a SolFocus project— the company plans on announcing a commercial project in the California desert in the near future.
Photo Credit: SolFocus, Inc.
Ariel Schwartz was formerly the editor of CleanTechnica and is a contributor at Fast Company, Inhabitat, Triple Pundit, SF Weekly, and NBC Bay Area Online. A graduate of Vassar College, she has previously worked in publishing, organic farming, documentary film, and newspaper journalism. Her interests include permaculture, hiking, skiing, music, relocalization, and cob (the building material). She currently resides in San Francisco, CA.