Soitec starts Portuguese CPV plant

French semiconductor electronics specialist Soitec has started building a 1.3MW concentrating PV (CPV) pilot in southern Portugal.

The project, which is backed by a group of investors including Luxembourg energy supplier Enovos and Portuguese science and arts funding body the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, is being built in Alcoutim by developer Luz-On and Electricidade Industrial Portuguesa.

The installation is made up of 82 Soitec Concentrix CPV modules, which uses a focusing technology involving a Fresnel lens and an anti-reflective bottom plate on which high-performance cells are mounted, boosting incoming sunlight by a factor of 500.

“As Portugal begins to implement CPV solar power to achieve its green-energy goals and prepare green-energy exports, we look forward to working with the team [of investors] on this first installation and other projects in the future,” says José Beriot, Soitec’s vice-president of solar projects development.

The new CPV plant is one of 11 projects flagged by the government to spearhead the development of CPV in Portugal.