The Chilean desert is considered to have one of the highest levels of solar radiation on the planet.
The plant, which will require an investment of $12 million, will be capable of supplying heat in an efficient and sustainable way to the production processes of Minera El Tesoro, a subsidiary of Antofagasta Minerals based in northern Chile.
Abengoa will be responsible for the engineering, design and start-up of the new solar-thermal plant, which will comprise a solar field of 1,280 parabolic trough collectors. In energy terms, the plant will enable Minera El Tesoro to further reduce its current use of fossil fuels by more than 50 percent.
In addition to the significant energy and fuel savings, the plant’s design will enable the mining corporation to reduce its carbon emissions by around 10,000 tonnes of CO2 for every year that the plant is operational, equivalent to the CO2 emissions from 65,000 round-the-world trips in an aeroplane.
The company’s Mexican project has the support of the Mexican Federal Electricity Commission and the Global Environment Facility of the United Nations’ Development Program.
The concentrated solar power (CSP) plant will be made up of a 12MW solar field of parabolic trough collectors and aims to be in operation within the next 22 months.
Abengoa will be responsible for the engineering, design, and start-up of the innovative solar-gas hybrid technology.
The second phase of the project is a combined cycle plant capable of generating up to 464.4MW of power. It will include two gas turbines, one steam turbine, a heat exchanger, cooling, condensing and power systems, and auxiliary equipment and systems.
Abengoa has already had experience with CSP plant projects in Morocco and Algeria.
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