Australia picks Areva for solar energy project
French state-owned energy group Areva announced Tuesday that it had won a bid to participate in an Australian solar energy programme.
Australia awarded the first phase of its Solar Flagships programme to a consortium uniting Areva Solar -- the group's 100 percent-owned subsidiary -- CS Energy and Wind Prospect CWP, an Areva statement said.
The Australian government programme hopes to develop and commercialise Australia's important solar energy capacities, said the statement.
This specific project, dubbed "Solar Dawn", foresees for the construction of a hybrid thermal solar and natural gas plant capable of generating 250 megawatts.
The Australian federal government pledged 464 million Australian dollars (342 million euros) to the project, with the state of Queensland contributing an additional 75 million Australian dollars.
The consortium must now work with Australian authorities and stakeholders to win permissions and financing for all aspects of the project.
Solar Dawn will be based in southwest Queensland near Logan Creek where Areva Solar recently won a CS Energy contract to compliment a coal-fueled electricity plant with solar thermal energy.
Solar Dawn will combine Areva's solar thermal technology with natural gas electricity production so that the plant provides power around the clock.
© 2011 AFP