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Stirling Energy Systems and Boeing cooperate on solar

Stirling Energy Systems (SES) and the Boeing Company are cooperating to complete the commercialisation and deployment of Boeing’s high concentration photovoltaic (HCPV) solar power technology.

SES will have exclusive rights to develop, manufacture and deploy Boeing’s XR700 HCPV solar technology.

Boeing will provide technical programme development and engineering expertise under a contracting partnership. NTR’s Tessera Solar, a sister company of SES, will be responsible for development, construction and operation of the solar power facilities using the technology.

The XR700 solar technology will be aimed at smaller scale projects of 50MW and below.

SES is currently deploying its SunCatcher™ concentrating solar power (CSP) technology which provides utility scale solar power using a Stirling engine to convert the sun’s heat to electricity. In January, SES and Tessera Solar unveiled the first commercial-scale deployment of the SES SunCatcher at the 1.5 MW Maricopa Solar Plant in Peoria, Arizona, USA.

Boeing began developing the XR700 technology in 2007 in collaboration with the US Department of Energy’s (DoE) Solar Energy Technologies Program. The technology development phase is expected to continue for the next two years before achieving commercial-scale deployment in 2012.

“Boeing Defense Space & Security Energy Solutions seeks to create new products and services in the emerging energy technology markets, including renewable energy and Smart Grid,” says Tim Noonan, Vice President, Boeing Advanced Global Services and Support.

The XR700 solar technology uses a non-imaging optical system to concentrate sunlight by a factor of 700 onto high-efficiency, triple-junction solar cells.

The solar cells are currently supplied by Boeing’s subsidiary Spectrolab.

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Photovoltaics (PV)  •  Solar electricity