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9 March 2009


SolFocus and Samaras expand Greek CPV project from 1.6MW to 10MW

Concentrator photovoltaic (CPV) system maker SolFocus Inc of Mountain View, CA, USA is to expand its installation of CPV technology in Greece (announced last November as a co-development with engineering company Concept, a division of renewable energy firm Samaras Group of Thessaloniki) from the originally agreed 1.6MWp to 10MWp. Over the past four months, the partners have investigated several sites and begun engineering plans for the installation.

“The swift expansion of this project resulted from the favorable political, economic, and energy generation environment that exists in Greece for commercial solar technologies,” says SolFocus’ CEO & president Mark Crowley.

Spanning multiple sites in Greece, installation will begin this summer (using the SolFocus 1100S systems), with the first delivery of power expected in the fall. Launched last November, the SF-1100S uses III-V-based solar cells to achieve panel efficiencies that are typically 30-50% greater than traditional PV panels, it is claimed, providing the highest energy generation potential per area of land. The Greek installation’s first year of production alone should prevent the release of 17,500 tons of CO2 emissions into the environment, it is reckoned.

“The Samaras Group is confident that we can accomplish such a significant project expansion with the continued partnership of SolFocus,” says Samaras Group’s president Dimitrios Samaras. “SolFocus systems are easy to scale, reliable in the field, and amazingly efficient,” he adds. In a solar-rich country like Greece, such efficiency can accelerate the trajectory for solar energy to reach cost parity with fossil fuels, SolFocus adds.

“2009 is truly the beginning of CPV commercialization, and Greece is a front-runner,” says Crowley. “We expect that CPV will follow a similar growth path in other high-sun regions over the next several years.”

See related items:

SolFocus raises $47.5m to commercialize CPVs

SolFocus and Samaras to develop first commercial CPV project in Greece

SolFocus launches 25%-efficient CPV system for medium/utility-scale plants

SolFocus and EMPE sign $103m deal for 10MW utility-scale PV project

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