Omani solar project raises $26m
- Oman: Tuesday, January 29 - 2013 at 10:10
- PRESS RELEASE
GlassPoint Solar just raised $26m in venture capital and built a pilot project to prove that its solar steam equipment could help oil companies pry loose of heavy crude and make it easier to extract.
The 7 MW pilot project is built by California-based GlassPoint Solar, and will be crucial for the four-year-old GlassPoint to validate its concentrating solar thermal technology, says Rod MacGregor, CEO of GlassPoint Solar.
The company is building the project for Petroleum Development Oman, which is a joint venture between the government of Oman, Royal Dutch Shell, Total and Partex. On Tuesday GlassPoint plans to announce a $26m round of investment from Shell, RockPort Capital, Nth Power and Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital.
The project is only the second for GlassPoint, which built a 300 KW system for Berry Petroleum in central California in early 2011. But the Middle East is where GlassPoint wants to be. It's the mother lode of oil production and where natural gas, which has historically been used to produce steam for oil extraction, remains expensive.
"It is apparent that whilst the solar industry in other areas is struggling, right across MENA, the opportunities for companies to get themselves involved with the wealth of opportunities that are presenting themselves. Right now, nothing is hotter for solar than the Middle East," says Derek Burston, exhibition manager, GulfSol 2013 (www.gulfsol.com).
"It is this reason that since the beginning of the year there has been a real surge in space reservations at this year's inaugural GulfSol exhibition, which will be in Dubai in September. As the only truly dedicated solar and PV show, the exhibition provides the perfect opportunity for companies to present themselves to a high quality visitor base over a three day period," he adds.
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