One of the world’s largest planned solar power projects has received the green light from Chilean government to commence construction.
Organized by SolarReserve, the Copiapó project, located in the Atacama Region, will combine energy storage technology with baseload solar power solutions and solar thermal equipment. The firm expects the project to reach commercial viability by 2019 and have it able to deliver 260 megawatts of clean energy 24 hours a day via a central interconnected system.
"One of the fundamental goals for SolarReserve is minimizing the environmental impacts of our projects at every stage -- from site selection and construction, to full operational use," SolarReserve CEO Kevin Smith said. "Sustainability is the focus of our business. Our proprietary solar energy storage technology provides a viable and cost competitive alternative to fossil-based electricity generation, with the potential to meaningfully reduce reliance on fossil fuels and associated carbon pollution that is contributing to climate change."
The Copiapó project is a combination effort of concentrating solar power towers with solar photovoltaic panels, with molten salt thermal technology for energy storage. This hybridization will allow over 1,800 gigawatt hours to outputted annually, allowing the solar power project to compete with coal fired power plants for efficiency.
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