Techwatch: Solel closes second major contract

This edition will focus on the efforts of Israeli companies in the alternative energy and clean tech sectors.

Following last week's visit to Israel by the former US Vice President Al Gore, who was in the country to receive the Dan David Prize for alerting the world to the crisis caused by overuse of fossil fuels as well as to speak at Tel Aviv University's Renewable Energy Conference, this edition of Tech Watch will focus on the efforts of Israeli companies in the alternative energy and clean tech sectors. Bet Shemesh-based Solel Solar Systems, Ltd. announced last week its largest single sale of solar receiver technology - a contract to supply Ibereólica Solar, S.L of Madrid, a leading Spanish parabolic trough solar thermal plant developer, with more than 190,000 UVAC 2008 receiver systems. The receivers will power eight 50MW solar power plants Ibereolica is developing in southern Spain. Delivery of the receivers to Ibereolica will commence in 2009. This is Solel's second large contract for solar receivers this month, with a combined contract value of over $250 million. Two weeks ago, Solel announced a contract with a Spanish consortium, whose name was not released, for approximately 70,000 receivers. Ramat Hasharon-based Israel Cleantech Ventures (ICV), the first Israeli cleantech-focused investment fund announced earlier this month that it reached a final close of $75m. for its debut fund, significantly exceeding its original target of $60m. ICV was established in 2006 to provide value added growth capital to exceptional entrepreneurs building Israel's energy, water and environmental leaders. ICV will invest in Israeli based or Israel related high growth clean technology companies, including alternative energy, water conservation and purification, emissions reduction and in technologies that enable existing industries to work in a more efficient and environmentally friendly manner. The fund has made seven investments to date in companies operating in various clean technology sectors, including Aqwise (waste water treatment), CellEra (fuel cells), Citrine Renewable Energy (landfill biogas treatment), Emefcy (energy production from wastewater), Metrolight (energy efficient lighting), Project Better Place (electric vehicle infrastructure) and Pythagoras Solar (solar energy). Meanwhile, Ormat Technologies, Inc. and Montana-Dakota Utilities Co. announced earlier this month that the two companies entered into an Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) agreement to build a 5.3 MW recovered energy generation facility to be located on the Northern Border Pipeline Company's (Northern Border) compressor station in Morton County, North Dakota. The facility, which is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2009, will produce electricity without burning additional fuel. The project, subject to regulatory approvals, will increase the utilization of the energy content by approximately 25 percent and will produce enough renewable energy to supply about 5,000 residential electric customers in Montana-Dakota's service territory. Recovered Energy Generation (REG) facilities consist of ORMAT Energy Converters (OEC) based on Organic Rankine Cycle technology, which convert recovered heat to electric power without the need for any additional fuel or water. [email protected]