Friday 15 December 2017

GlassPoint Solar's Oman power plant project on track

MUSCAT, October 5, 2017

GlassPoint Solar, a leader in solar for the oil and gas industry, has announced the successful completion of the first block of its giant Miraah solar plant, located at the Amal oilfield operated by Petroleum Development Oman (PDO).

Construction started on Miraah, a one-gigawatt solar thermal project, in November 2015 at the same oilfield in south Oman. Once completed, it will generate 1,021 MW of peak thermal energy, thus making it one of the world’s largest solar plants of its kind.

Miraah comprises 36 standard greenhouse blocks built in a continuous sequence. In August this year, the first greenhouse block was completed as per schedule and on budget. The construction of the remaining blocks are on track.

PDO selected GlassPoint to build Miraah following the success of its pilot plant in Oman, where it demonstrated the reliability and cost effectiveness of its solar thermal technology for oilfield applications, said a statement from the company.

GlassPoint pointed out that its seven MW pilot project for PDO had been operating since 2013 and this paved the way for Miraah, it stated.

"GlassPoint’s pilot project for PDO, which produces steam for oil production, has been operating successfully for more than four years. During this time, we worked closely with our partners at PDO to enhance the technology for oilfield deployment and improve overall cost efficiency as we scale by a factor of 100,” remarked Ben Bierman, the chief operating officer and acting CEO.

GlassPoint Solar along with its partner PDO has reduced costs by 55 per cent in the scale up of a massive desert solar project to produce steam used in thermal enhanced oil recovery (EOR), he noted.

The duo recently published new cost-saving achievements in a technical paper presented at SolarPaces 2017, the world’s leading technical conference for the concentrating solar power (CSP) industry held in Chile.

The paper, co-authored with GlassPoint’s partner and customer PDO, details how the companies have to date reduced costs considerably.

"The technology is being scaled up from a seven-megawatt (MW) pilot to Miraah. The savings resulted from the use of improved designs, enhanced tooling and increased workforce productivity in deploying its enclosed trough technology, " he noted.

"GlassPoint’s enclosed trough technology features a unique solar thermal design that takes parabolic trough collectors, or large curved mirrors, and puts them inside an agricultural greenhouse. The mirrors concentrate sunlight on a pipe filled with oilfield-grade water and boils the water directly into steam. The process is typically fuelled by burning natural gas," explained Bierman.

"The results presented at SolarPaces reflect our ongoing commitment to innovation and cost reduction to deliver the most energy per dollar spent," he stated.

GlassPoint’s chief technology officer Pete von Behrens said the greenhouse serves as protection, foundation, and structure in one, enabling major cost and performance advantages compared to exposed solar designs.

"Most importantly, the zero-wind environment lets us reduce the amount of raw materials used throughout the entire system. Using less material reduces the weight and costs of the solar collectors, and makes the plant easier to install and easier to maintain," he added.-TradeArabia News Service

Tags: Oman | Solar plant | GlassPoint Solar |

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