White House Environmental Quality Chair Visits Innovative Sopogy Project in Tucson

February 3, 2012

First project in Arizona to use Concentrated Solar Power with Dual Effect Absorption Chiller

Tucson, Arizona – February 3, 2012 – Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, Nancy Sutley, will visit Davis-Monthan Air Force Base today to inspect an air conditioning project that will be fueled by the sun. In a collaborative RDT&E effort, ESTCP, the US Navy and NASA have partnered to build the solar air conditioning system on the Air Force Base. They have selected Sopogy, a Hawaii-based clean tech, as technology provider.

Sopogy’s technology is called MicroCSP for micro-concentrated solar power. MicroCSP is a renewable source of energy delivered through modular, parabolic solar collectors. Sopogy’s collectors are twelve feet long, and weigh less than two-hundred pounds.

At Davis-Monthan AFB, the solar air conditioning system will provide sixty-six tons of chilled air to the Youth Center. Seventy-two MicroCSP collectors will concentrate the sun’s heat onto receiver tubes carrying heat transfer fluid to fuel the chiller. The dual-effect absorption chiller generates cold air with heat, not electricity, the hotter the sun, the more effective the chiller. In addition to the solar collectors, Sopogy is providing proprietary thermal storage to back-up the cooling system. MicroCSP thermal storage is low cost relative to batteries. When clouds roll in, hot fluid will flow from storage to the chiller for continuous production.

Department of Defense studies have concluded that air conditioning accounts for 30-60% of its total facility energy expenditures. Switching from fossil fuels to solar heat will help the DOD to meet is aggressive renewable energy targets. The demonstration project at Davis-Monthan AFB is scheduled for completion in March 2012.

Here’s a video explaining how Solar A/C works: /video/sopohow_how_it_works_ep2.html

About Sopogy
Sopogy revolutionized solar thermal technology with Micro Concentrated Solar Power, or MicroCSP. Developing modular collectors about one-third the size of a traditional concentrated solar power mirror, Sopogy cut the cost of solar thermal energy to a fraction of the cost. Proprietary storage units stabilize volatile energy production when cloudy and prolong production after sunset. Please visit www.sopogy.org.

Media Contact
Tsurumi Hamasu
808-237-2439
thamasu@sopogy.org