Cogenra Solar has been selected by the Department of Energy's Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) for an award of $1.996 million under its Full-Spectrum Optimized Conversion and Utilization of Sunlight (FOCUS) program.
Cogenra says it will use the grant to develop its T14 concentrated photovoltaic system into a hybrid technology that incorporates solar power storage.
The proposed research will build on Cogenra's existing low-temperature storage capability to develop a higher-temperature concentrating solar power (CSP) arrangement. The company says it will be splitting the optical spectrum into visible and infrared (IR) components. The visible wavelengths will be used to generate electricity from high-efficiency PV cells while the IR wavelengths will be separated and directed to heat a storage medium to high temperatures that can be stored and converted to electricity on-demand with a steam turbine.
Cogenra says the hybrid system's modularity will enable cost-effective solar with integrated storage for utility-scale power plants and distributed commercial and industrial market segments.
‘We're very excited about this opportunity to create the next generation hybrid system for the emerging high-growth storage market,’ says Gilad Almogy, Cogenra's founder and CEO. ‘This proposed system has the potential to not only meet the cost structures needed for wide adoption of large-scale storage, but it could also do so for the distributed behind-the-meter customers.’
In addition, Cogenra won a second ARPA-E FOCUS grant in partnership with the University of Tulsa. As lead, the university will use its $1.759 million award to construct a hybrid solar converter that captures IR light to heat a fluid containing light-absorbing nanoparticles. Cogenra will provide the concentrator subsystem.