Solar thermal projects mushroom in Spain
Two projects for 50 MW Solar electric thermal plants in Spain have been announced recently. Many more to come.
Ener-t Global an Israeli company, and Grupo Enhol, a Spanish group, have sealed a deal to develop solar electric thermal plants in Spain (Renewable Energy Magazine). The first one (50 MW) will be built in Badajoz (Spain), as the area has “optimum radiation and climate conditions, which will achieve a greater performance for the plant“. The electricity produced will be able to power the town of Mérida, capital city of the region.
Their agreement includes the creation of a society shared at 50% by both companies, aiming to develop and build plants using parabolic troughs. The total investment will be around 600 million euros.
This piece of news follows the announcement made by IDAE and Iberdrola of the construction of another 50 MW plant in Puertollano, not too far away from Badajoz.
Expected to be ready next year, the project will cost 200 m euros and is being developed by Iberdrola and IDAE, a Spanish Government body. Construction works have already started in Puertollano ; this is only the first one of a series of ten solar electric thermal plants with the same projected output to be developed in Spain by Iberdrola, the world’s largest renewable energy developer. All the plants will use parabolic trough.
Annual production will be around 120 GWh, enough to power a 50,000 people town while avoiding the emission of almost 40,000 tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
Spain was the second country to develop large-scale solar thermal technology with a facility in the Plataforma Solar de Almeria (America was first at the Mojave desert). In fact, Ener-t Global’s team includes members of the original group that developed the technology used in the 354 MW thermo-solar power plants known as the SEGS, operating successfully…not a lot of guessing here… in the Mojave Desert in California for more than 20 years.
Nowadays, these technologies are being embraced in both countries at the commercial level, as we have been commenting in previous posts.
Parabolic troughs at Kramer Junction in California – Picture by Kjkolb