Focusic New Energy Holding Co., Ltd., a Chinese developer of renewable-energy power plants, and Soitec (Euronext), a global enterprise in generating and manufacturing revolutionary semiconductor materials for the electronics and energy industries, announced on November 20th that Focusic has secured a loan for 200 million Yuan (approximately US$32.7 million) from the China Development Bank (CDB) to finance a 20-megawatt CPV project* in Hami, a city on the edge of the Gobi desert in China’s Xinjiang province. The project, of which the initial 3-megawatt pilot plant were announced by Focusic and Soitec in 2011, is the first utility scale project to be granted a CDB loan for Concentrating Photovoltaic (CPV) technology. This also marks the first CPV large power plant in China to secure financing.
Focusic is building the 20-megawatt power plant in partnership with Soitec, which had supplied the full dual-axis CPV systems for the first 3 MWs and will supply its new generation of high-efficiency modules for the entire project. The power plant is expected to begin contributing approximately 3 megawatts to the local power grid by the end of this year and then ramping up its output as the plant is built out with another phase completed in 2014.
With its power-generating efficiency of more than 30 percent and low installation and maintenance costs, CPV technology is the most cost-efficient solution for high-volume power generation in regions with high direct normal irradiance (DNI). China contains an estimated 500,000 square miles of territory with high DNI ratings and has an enormous and growing demand for energy.
With installations in 18 countries around the world, Soitec’s CPV technology is proving its competitiveness in generating solar power, largely due to its higher production yields throughout daylight hours. In addition, CPV technology’s abilities to operate without cooling water, withstand hot ambient temperatures and have minimal environmental impact make it perfectly suited for use in environmentally sensitive desert areas. Soitec is well positioned to expand quickly in the world’s sunniest regions, which also are the fastest growing market segments for the solar industry.
*As of today Focusic has ordered to Soitec 8,5MWp out of the 20MWp for which Focusic has secured the financing.