Amsterdam-based renewable company Photon has made a $3 million investment in a Melbourne-based 100MW/1,000MWh solar and storage project, set to be constructed by RayGen Resources.
Photon had previously made a minor equity stake and has now made this significant equity investment, which gives them a stake of around 9 per cent in the company. RayGen has emerged as a rising star in Australian renewables and has previously received $1 million from the Victorian Government under the New Energy Jobs Fund grants.
RayGen’s focus is on concentrated solar PV solutions that eliminate the intermittency of the renewable source, and ensures 24-hour delivery at a grid-competitive price point. Their proprietary PV Ultra technology involves a tower-mounted photovoltaic receiver, with around 400 PV Ultra modules, that converts sunlight into 1MW of electricity and 2MW of heat for a total of 3MW of power. It works by using mirrors to magnify the sunlight and deliver concentrated results.
The company has already tasted success with their project in Newbridge, Victoria, which saw their Ultra PV technology deployed for the first time anywhere in the world. It is being used to support local agribusiness in rural Victoria and delivers a peak optical efficiency of 85 per cent.
Now the company has set their sights high with their plans for the significant project in Melbourne to be planned and rolled out in the coming years, followed by global deployment of their technologies.
RayGen chief executive Richard Payne said the investment from Photon was critical for deploying their products into a worldwide market.
“Photon Energy has global capability to develop and deploy innovative renewable energy and clean water solutions,” he said.
“We are thrilled to receive a follow-on investment from Photon Energy, who share our vision to accelerate the transition to renewable energy with our highly innovative solar plus storage technology.”
RayGen Resources gets ARENA funding for regional solar/hydro project
Another major project that the company is working on is a 40MW/50MWh solar hydropower plant for regional Victoria, which has received $3 million in funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).
This funding is being used for a feasibility study to determine the best location for the power plant. The plan includes the proprietary concentrated PV technology, used in tandem with hydropower, in a grid system coupled with large-scale battery storage.
This PV Ultra technology caught the eyes of Photon, with Australian managing director Michael Gartner saying they backed the continued development of PV Ultra and RayGen Resources projects.
“RayGen technology tackles the problem of intermittency of solar energy head-on, as it combines high efficiency concentrated PV generation with thermal absorption and storage, providing for the highest energy density of any solar technology available today,” he said.
“We are convinced that our second investment will lead to advances in both optimising EPC outcomes and on developing utility-scale projects globally.”