GE Energy is to consolidate its business partnership with eSolar by investing US$40 million in the concentrated solar thermal power technology developer. As part of the agreement, Paul Browning, GE Energy’s president and CEO of Thermal Products, will join eSolar’s board of directors.
“Our partnership with GE moves our innovative technology to the next stage,” said John Van Scoter, president and CEO of eSolar. “Together, we are able to bring to market a power plant solution that drives down the cost of solar and meets the growing demand for renewable energy generation.
“Building on our proven technology, this investment will fund the development of next-generation, modular solutions that enhance the cost competitiveness of solar, such as molten salt storage technology. We welcome Mr Browning to our board as a valuable asset in driving the strategic direction of the company during this time of rapid growth.”
GE has recently launched its Integrated Solar Combined Cycle (ISCC) power plant solution, which couples eSolar’s innovative solar thermal technology with GE’s fleet of combined cycle products. When combined with GE’s FlexEfficiency 50 Combined Cycle Power Plant technology, the ISCC is capable of delivering fuel efficiencies of more than 70%.
“Adding eSolar’s high temperature tower technology to our combined cycle product offering allows us to offer an integrated solution with unparalleled efficiency, full dispatchability, and a market competitive cost of electricity,” Browning said. “It allows us to offer a power plant that creates more value for customers.”
eSolar has signed an licensing agreement with GE for the exclusive use of its modular technology with ISCC in every country bar China and India. The two companies are targeting Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the US, and are already working alongside investors to develop a 530MW project in Turkey. eSolar is also planning further projects that are due to be unveiled in the near future.