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Woodside and Heliogen advance novel solar projects in US and Australia

© Shutterstock / viewimageWoodside
Woodside

Australia’s Woodside and US-based Heliogen have signed an agreement to deploy a 5 MW electric (MWe) module of Heliogen’s AI-enabled concentrated solar energy technology in California and jointly market Heliogen’s innovative technology in Australia.

The pair announced a deal for the commercial-scale demonstration deployment of Heliogen’s AI-enabled concentrated solar energy technology proposed to be built in Mojave, California.

The project agreement follows the previously announced Limited Notice To Proceed granted by Woodside to Heliogen to start procurement of key equipment for the deployment of a commercial scale, single module 5 megawatt electric (5 MWe) facility. Under the project agreement, Heliogen will complete the engineering, procurement, and construction of the facility, with construction expected to begin once permits are approved.

The two companies have agreed to include the scope and associated funding from Heliogen’s previously announced US$39 million award from the U.S. Department of Energy to deploy Heliogen’s renewable energy technology in California. This means that in addition to commercial-scale demonstration of Heliogen’s 5 MWe module, the project will also include the deployment and testing of an innovative approach to converting the thermal energy produced by Heliogen’s facility into power, which has the potential to deliver higher efficiencies with a smaller footprint than traditional steam turbines.

In addition to the project agreement, Heliogen and Woodside have also signed a collaboration agreement to jointly market Heliogen’s technology in Australia. Under this arrangement, the companies expect to define product offerings that use Heliogen’s modular technology for potential customers (including Woodside) in Australia and are establishing a roadmap to identify and engage with those customers. The Australian Collaboration Agreement includes an objective to deploy further commercial-scale modules of Heliogen’s heat and power offerings which may be combined with a hydrogen offering, strengthening Woodside’s role in the energy transition to lower carbon energy sources. The companies are also in similar discussions in relation to Heliogen’s technology in the U.S.

Woodside eyes first mover advantage in North Asian hydrogen markets

“We are thrilled to be working with leading Australian energy producer, Woodside. Our agreements represent a pivotal next step in the commercialisation of Heliogen’s breakthrough concentrated solar technology and the decarbonisation of heavy industry,” said Bill Gross, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Heliogen. “We are also pleased to share that, along with these agreements, our strategic alliance with Woodside includes Woodside taking an equity participation in Heliogen.”

Gross continued, “The proposed Mojave facility will further advance our discussions with Woodside for additional opportunities aiming to produce carbon-free heat, power and hydrogen to help them achieve their sustainability goals.”

“Woodside has set a US$5 billion investment target by 2030 for new energy products and lower-carbon services,” said Meg O’Neill, Chief Executive Officer of Woodside. “Our collaboration with Heliogen on this innovative technology supports our commitment to building a low cost, lower-carbon, profitable, resilient and diversified portfolio.”

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