Google Invests $168 million in Largest Solar Tower Power Project

Posted on April 12, 2011  Comments (6)

Google is investing in a new solar tower power project located in California that will generate 392 gross MW of clean, solar energy. That’s the equivalent of taking more than 90,000 cars off the road. Google has now invested $250 million in clean energy.

Investing in the world’s largest solar power tower plant

works by using a field of mirrors, called heliostats, to concentrate the sun’s rays onto a solar receiver on top of a tower. The solar receiver generates steam, which then spins a traditional turbine and generator to make electricity. Power towers are very efficient because all those mirrors focus a tremendous amount of solar energy onto a small area to produce steam at high pressure and temperature (up to 1000 degrees F).

Several large solar projects are in the works in the sunny Southwest (and around the globe), but Ivanpah will be the first solar power tower system of this scale. The Ivanpah Power Tower will be approximately 450 feet tall and will use 173,000 heliostats, each with two mirrors.

The Department of energy is also providing financing for this project. The project is 10 times larger than the largest solar photovoltaic project in California.

Related: Google Investing Huge Sums in Renewable Energy and is Invests $10 million in Geothermal EnergyGoogle’s Energy InterestsMolten Salt Solar Reactor Approved by CaliforniaSolar Tower Power GenerationFinding Huge Sources of Energy Without Increasing Carbon Dioxide Output

6 Responses to “Google Invests $168 million in Largest Solar Tower Power Project”

  1. Greg
    June 10th, 2011 @ 11:10 pm

    Solar power is not simply used to power our homes and businesses: solar power is used to power the earth. In fact, solar power has been the main source of power for the earth since time began. Solar power was born more than a hundred years ago, but the discussions about using this type of energy do not die up to this time.

    At present when gas prices and home energy prices skyrocket, many people would rather talk about the use of alternative energies than imported oil. We would all like cheaper electricity and gas bills, but most of us shop around for the provider with the lowest electricity, gas or oil prices and leave it at that and there are other ways to warm your house with solar and wind power.

  2. Anonymous
    June 13th, 2011 @ 1:37 am

    Glad to read this, however late.

    Google should be commended for taking a big and much positive step towards Clean Energy and Green Living. Solar and Wind powers are infinite and does not harm our environment.

    For us, we can make our own small contribution starting from the habits inside our home. Let’s conserve water, buy only eco-friendly products, use LED Lights instead of incandescent, grow your own veggies thru Container Gardening.

    No soil to plant on? No problem. Hydroponic Gardening is the best option for you.

  3. Anonymous
    January 19th, 2012 @ 2:05 am

    Google is doing an amazing thing. But what I would suggest is for google to be a foreign investor in caribbean countries where there is 24 hour sunlight. However, solar energy is a great way to go.

  4. tom
    March 22nd, 2012 @ 11:33 am

    Solar power certainly offers a new paradigm to gas and electric generators. Glad to see Google investing in new energy solutions.

  5. Loon – Ballon Enabled Internet » Curious Cat Science and Engineering Blog
    June 15th, 2013 @ 4:43 am

    If they can get it to work they plan to use ballons to provide wireless internet access to hundreds of millions, or even billions, of people that don’t have access now. These ballons would float about 20 km above earth in the stratosphere (so well above where commercial airline traffic) and they are really playing a role somewhat like to satellites…

  6. Solar Energy Capacity by Country at Curious Cat Investing and Economics Blog
    April 23rd, 2015 @ 9:18 pm

    The USEIA predicted in 2018 China will have the most solar PV capacity followed by Germany, Japan and the USA…

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