Abengoa To Go It Alone On Palen CSP, Plans Thermal Storage Capability


Spain-based Abengoa has agreed to acquire BrightSource Energy's interest in the Palen Solar Energy Generating Station (PSEGS) project in California.

Upon finalization of the purchase transaction, Abengoa will become the sole developer of the concentrating solar power (CSP) project. Abengoa says it will continue to pursue a tower-based design for the plant, but will propose its molten salt tower technology, incorporating large thermal energy storage (TES) capacity. Details of the transaction have not been disclosed.

In September, the California Energy Commission (CEC) recommended that
a one-tower configuration for the PSEGS project be approved. This had been a revision from an earlier two-tower configuration. Because Abengoa has now assessed that the TES capability for Palen is best accomplished in a two-tower configuration, a new revision application must be submitted to the CEC.

Abengoa says TES allows solar energy to be stored so that it can be dispatched when the sun is not shining, provide peaking or even baseload power. Abengoa is using similar technology for its 110 MW Cerro Dominador CSP tower project in Chile. A variation on TES was used for the Solana parabolic trough CSP plant Abengoa built for Arizona Public Service Corp.

For more information on how energy storage can be integrated with solar generating capability, visit the Hybrid Energy Innovations event site here.

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