BrightSource, Bechtel to partner in California solar facility

The Ivanpah system is a 440 megawatt solar power facility consisting of three separate solar thermal power plants.

Solar energy plant developer BrightSource Energy, Inc. said today that it has selected engineering and project management firm Bechtel as the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor for the Ivanpah Solar Electricity Generating System.

The Ivanpah system is a 440 megawatt solar power facility consisting of three separate solar thermal power plants in southeastern California.

The power generated from the solar plants will be sold under separate contracts established by BrightSource Energy with Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) and Southern California Edison (SCE). BrightSources contracts with PG&E and SCE total 2.6 gigawatts.

Bechtel Enterprises, the project development and financing arm of the Bechtel organization, will become an equity investor in all of the Ivanpah solar power plants.

The Ivanpah facility will utilize BrightSource Energys Luz Power Tower 550 technology (LPT 550). The system produces electricity by creating high temperature steam to turn a turbine. To create the steam, BrightSource uses thousands of mirrors called heliostats to reflect sunlight onto a boiler filled with water that sits atop a tower. When the sunlight hits the boiler, the water inside is heated and creates high temperature steam. The steam is then piped to a conventional turbine which generates electricity.

Today the companys LPT 550 solar system is employed at the Solar Energy Development Center (SEDC) in Israels Negev Desert. Operating over the past year, the SEDC is producing the worlds highest temperature turbine quality steam from solar energy.

BrightSource CEO John M. Woolard said yesterday at a San Francisco conference that the company is looking for partners in China and India for projects in those countries.

Headquartered in Oakland, California, BrightSource Energy is a privately held company with operations in the United States and Israel.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on September 9, 2009

Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2009

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