SkyFuel, Inc., has announced that it has signed an agreement with Sunray Energy, Inc., which is a fully owned subsidiary of Cogentrix Energy, LLC, for the installation of SkyTrough collectors.
The SkyTrough collectors will be installed at Sunray’s 43MW parabolic trough generating plant in California; this plant was formerly known as Solar Energy Generation Systems I and II (SEGS I & II).
SkyFuel founder and Chief Executive Officer Dr. Arnold Leitner said, “This deployment is the next step in our process to verify the low cost and high performance of the SkyTrough, a process that began in 2008 with design and component testing, continues with independent testing by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (“NREL”) and Sandia National Laboratories, and since March of this year also includes testing of the heat transfer fluid loop at our Colorado R&D Center. Now the SkyTrough takes the next step with integration into a commercial power plant.”
This agreement allows for the first commercial installation of SkyTrough, which will allow the system to be demonstrated as an upcoming instrumental aspect of full-scale solar generation.
SkyTrough is an advanced parabolic trough concentrator, which uses glass-free ReflecTech Mirror Film reflectors, offering a dramatic departure from the prior state-of-the-art for parabolic trough concentrating collectors. This is due to the fact that ReflecTech Film does not shatter and will not cause expensive and time-consuming damage to receiver tubes.
SkyFuel Chief Technology Officer Randy Gee said, “We maintained two overriding design principles when we started work on the SkyTrough: improve every single component of a parabolic trough and make it less expensive. The project at Sunray will help us demonstrate that we’ve achieved those goals.”
Although business terms are yet to be disclosed, construction of the SkyTrough installation at Sunray’s plant will begin in the current quarter with completion and commercial electricity production scheduled for the end of 2009.