Griffith Hack Clean & Sustainable Technologies

Massive solar deal in China by Justin Blows
January 13, 2010, 7:44 am
Filed under: Feature | Tags: , , , ,

According to this report the solar thermal company eSolar has made a deal to licence its technology into China.  The plans are to build 2 GW (!) of solar thermal power generation capacity over 10 years.  eSolar specialises in solar tower technology in which multiple mirrors on the ground concentrate sunlight on a boiler at the top of a tower.

Once again, this demonstrates the phenomenal plans that are in place in China to beef up renewable power generation.  The centre for clean and sustainable technologies is moving rapidly towards China.

A solar field by eSolar who has sealed an IP licensing deal into China

The licensing deal is no doubt centered on eSolar’s patent portfolio.  I had a very quick look for their patents / applications and I found these.  Interestingly, eSolar has sealed an astonishing deal with only around 10 patent applications – although there may be more that I have not found.  It just goes to show how powerful patents are. 

Another interesting point to note that is that the deal was not for the supply of hardware but intellectual property.  This makes a lot of sense when dealing with China because they can manufacturer very competitively, but need the ideas to drive their manufacturing.  This is a continuation of  thought of in the west but made in China – think Apple (TM) for another example.  The Chinese government is, I understand, very generous to companies setting up manufacturing in China, which can turn out a product cheaply in any case.

Justin Blows


Nobel laureate: Wind is not the future by Justin Blows
June 3, 2009, 2:23 pm
Filed under: News | Tags: , ,

Solar, not wind is the future says Nobel laureate.  According to this report, 1968 Nobel Prize winner in physics, Jack Steinberger thinks that the future of renewal energy is solar, not wind power.

He thinks that the fundamental advantage of solar thermal is that energy can be stored easily in thermal storage systems, whereas storing the power generated by wind is problematic.

Steinberger is a supporter of plans to build large solar thermal power plants in Northern Europe and transmitting the generated electricity to Europe via high voltage under sea cables.  Presumably, Steinberger is referring to high voltage DC cables which are known to be able to transmit huge quantities of power with very low transmission costs over large distances.