SUNCNIM has Raised €60 Million to Finance the World’s First Fresnel Renewable Energy Thermodynamic Power Plant with Energy-Storage Capacity
SUNCNIM, a subsidiary of CNIM, is a joint-venture set up by CNIM and the state organization Bpifrance’s “Société de Projets Industriels”. It has achieved ‘Financial close’ of the project company eLlo, created for the purpose of building and operating the concentrated solar energy power plant at Llo in the Pyrenees (France). This will be the world’s first Fresnel solar thermodynamic power plant with the capacity to store several hours of energy.
The Llo power plant, which will be built and operated by SUNCNIM, is the culmination of the bidding process initiated by the Energy Regulation Board for a contract awarded to CNIM in 2012.
“The plant will be the world’s first in terms of technology. Designed to be eco-friendly and 100% recyclable, it will employ SUNCNIM technology using “Fresnel mirrors”. The thermal energy produced will be stored and converted into electricity via a steam generation process”, explains Roger Pujol, SUNCNIM’s Chairman.
Capable of generating over 9 MWe, with a 4-hour thermal energy storage capacity and 153,000 m2 of mirror area, it will produce renewable electricity to be exported via the EDF grid.
According to Stanislas Ancel, a member of the CNIM Management board, “the Llo power plant marks the success of CNIM’s solar thermodynamic research and investment strategy, the key stages of which were the design and manufacturing of a prototype at its Seyne-sur-Mer site in 2010, the validation of its design by the Agency for the Environment and Optimization of Energy Resources (ADEME) in 2012 and the creation of the subsidiary SUNCNIM using the SPI “Industrial Projects Company” fund, financed by Bpifrance’s Investing for the Future Program. This preliminary initiative demonstrates our capability as a constructor and operator of large-scale technological projects.”
“SUNCNIM was the first investment of SPI funds” explains Magali Joessel, Director of the SPI fund at Bpifrance, created with the aim of “accelerating the industrialization of a technology with the potential to be a world leader in the still-emerging market for the production of solar thermal energy.”
SUNCNIM’s technology also provides a cost-effective solution for THERMAL EOR for the heavy oil industry. With a simple and robust technical solution adapted to a demanding desert environment, it ensures the lowest CAPEX and OPEX and the highest percentage of locally built content.