USA

CSP Project Development

Information Updated through April 2017 about all CSP projects in the USA

Latest online: 110 MW Crescent Dunes, tower CSP with 10 hours of storage, operational since 2015

Total CSP in Operation in the USA: 1.3 GW

Earliest online: in 1984 SEGS I, the first 14 MW unit of the 354 MW SEGS trough CSP complex began operation

CSP Potential

CSP History

Between 1984 and 1991, Luz International Limited pioneered CSP; developing the world’s first commercial CSP plants in the Mojave Desert, California. The SEGS plants consist of nine solar power plants using parabolic trough technology with an aggregate capacity of 354 MW. These plants are still operating and the power produced is purchased by Southern California Edison (SCE) for about 6 cents per kWh.

Plant Name

Location

Operation

Net Output (MWe)

Solar Field Area (m2)

SEGS I

Daggett, CA

1984

13.8

82,960

SEGS II

Daggett, CA

1985

30

190,338

SEGS III

Kramer Junction, CA

1986

30

230,300

SEGS IV

Kramer Junction, CA

1986

30

230,300

SEGS V

Kramer Junction, CA

1987

30

250,500

SEGS VI

Kramer Junction, CA

1988

30

188,000

SEGS VII

Kramer_Junction,_CA

1988

30

194,280

SEGS VIII

Harper Lake, CA

1989

80

464,340

SEGS IX

Harper Lake, CA

1990

80

483,960

In 2006, Solargenix Energy built the Saguaro plant in Tucson, Arizona. This 1 MW demonstration plant provided great experience for the subsequent build of Nevada Solar One (NSO).
In June 2007, Nevada Solar One went into operation in Boulder City, Nevada, as the largest CSP project built in the United States since 1991. With a nominal capacity of 64 MW, NSO produces annually more than 130 GWh. The power plant is composed of 357,000 m2 of second generation parabolic trough collectors (SGX2) developed by Solargenix Energy with the collaboration of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
In 2008 and 2009 three small prototype plants were developed:

 

Kimberlina, a 5 MW Fresnel plant in Bakersfield, California.
Holaniku, a 2 MW microCSP plant in Keahole Point, Hawaii.
Sierra Sun, a 5 MW water/steam multi-tower plant in Lancaster, California.

five US CSP projects came online between 2013 and 2015

Between 2013 and 2015, five utility-scale CSP projects came online:


Genesis, 250 MW, NextEra, trough, California, 2013

Solana, 280 MW, Abengoa, trough, Arizona, 2013

Mojave, 250 MW, Abengoa, trough, California, 2014


Ivanpah, 377 MW, BrightSource, tower, California, 2014

Crescent Dunes, 110 MW, SolarReserve, tower with storage, Nevada, 2015

Additional CSP projects underwent development in response to supportive policy during the Obama administration, but ultimately failed to attract financing in time for their utility PPA milestones (e.g. SolarReserve’s Rice), or were the target of opposition (e.g. Abengoa’s Palen) or as PV prices fell fast, were converted to PV projects .