Sopogy

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Sopogy
Type Venture backed private
Industry Solar Energy, Concentrating Solar Power Technology and Engineering
Founded 2002
Founder(s) Darren Kimura
Headquarters San Jose, California, USA, Honolulu, Hawaii, U.S.
Key people Darren Kimura (Former President and Former Chief Executive Officer, Current Chief Global Strategist)David Fernandez (President and Chief Operating Officer)
Tsurumi Hamasu(Vice President of Administration)
Products Concentrated Solar Panels
Website sopogy.com

Sopogy a solar thermal technology supplier was founded in 2002 at the Honolulu, Hawaii based clean technology incubator known as Energy Laboratories. The company began its research on concentrating solar thermal energy to produce solar steam and thermal heat for absorption chillers or industrial process heat. The company has also developed applications that incorporate its solar collectors to generate electricity and desalination.[1] Sopogy's name origin comes from industry key words "SO" from Solar "PO" from "Power" and "GY" from "Energy and Technology"[2] The company has its OEM and IPP sales teams along with Research and Development located in Honolulu, HI, and in 2006 expanded its Manufacturing, C&I and Oil and Gas sales teams in its Silicon Valley facility.[3] Sopogy went out of business in late 2013 or early 2014 and nobody noticed until publication of an April 22, 2014 article in Pacific Business News.

MicroCSP Technologies[edit]

Sopogy coined the term "MicroCSP"[4] in which Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) collectors are based on the designs used in traditional Concentrating Solar Power systems found in the Mojave Desert[5] but are smaller in collector size, lighter and operate at lower thermal temperatures usually below 600 °F (316 °C). These systems are designed for modular field or rooftop installation where they are easy to protect from high winds, snow and humid deployments.[6]

MicroCSP is a registered trademark of Sopogy[7]

SopoHelios[edit]

SopoHelios™ is Sopogy’s high heat classification collector (50-326 degrees C or 122-620 degrees F). It is a single-axis tracking parabolic trough solar collector designed to reduce the cost of ground mounted MicroCSP solar fields. SopoHelios collectors have 7.61 meters squared (82 square feet) of reflective area for greater field efficiency and include a lightweight structural core for improved torsion, strength and durability; component parts for quicker installation; and improved optical efficiency. SopoHelios is used in Solar Thermal Air Conditioning, Power Generation and High Temperature Heat Processes including Hydraulic Fracturing for Natural Gas extraction.[8]

SopoNova[edit]

SopoNova™ is Sopogy’s medium heat classification collector (50-270 degrees C or 122-518 degrees F) designed for distributed generation installations that include ground mounting or rooftops. The technology operates similarly to conventional parabolic trough systems used in California since the mid-1980s[9] but modified to reduce the physical size and is similarly manufactured to fluorescent lighting luminares or automotive parts. The package ships flat and unassembled. The system uses an integrated 270 degree tracking, customized stands, and controls.[10] Image of SopoNova 4.0

SopoFlare[edit]

Sopogy, Inc. introduced SopoFlare at Solar Power International 2009 in Anaheim. SopoFlare is the first commercially available Concentrating Solar Power technology designed specifically for rooftop installations. The technology is used to create steam, solar thermal air conditioning, drying, dehumidification, desalination, hot water.[11]

SopoLite[edit]

SopoLite is a mobile concentrating solar power unit used to collect solar radiation and weather data. In addition the Sopolite can be used to generate energy for portable applications including power, air conditioning or heat.[12]

The name SopoLite supposedly comes from the term Satellite as the device is designed to be a stand-alone instrument. Sopogy is deploying similar SopoLite’s across the US and around the World in an effort to collect relevant solar data useful for evaluating locations across the globe to determine the quality of their solar resources.[13]

Projects[edit]

In 2007 a collaboration between Sopogy and Avista Utilities was announced for a MicroCSP deployment at the Avista Clean Energy Test Site[14]

In 2008, a joint announcement between Sopogy of the USA, Inypsa of Spain and Omniwatt of Germany was made discussing a 50 megawatt project in Toledo Spain.[15]

In 2009, Sopogy inaugurated Holaniku at Keahole Point, a 2 Megawatt MicroCSP Solar Thermal Plant[16] project on the Big Island of Hawaii at the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority.[17] This project is connected to the Hawaiian Electric Industries grid under a Power Purchase Agreement and is only one of a small handful of grid connected solar thermal power plants in the United States. It was also the first MicroCSP Power project in the World. According to Jay Holman, lead analyst for IDC Energy Insights' Renewable Energy Strategies program, "The HKP project was an important test of the feasibility of the micro CSP approach in general, and Sopogy's approach in particular … only time will tell if the company will be able to compete in a world of rapidly falling costs for PV plants."[18]

Also in 2009, Sopogy introduced a solar air conditioning project with Southern California Gas Company[19]

In 2010, Sopogy completed a hybrid electricity and H2O system at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg Florida.[20] Masdar City in Abu Dhabi successfully activated a 50-ton air conditioning system driven by Sopogy’s MicroCSP collectors.[21] In November of that year Kalaeloa Solar One and the State of Hawaii Department of Hawaiian Homelands announced a 5MW electrical project using Sopogy Solar technologies.[22] In December 2010, Yu Hao Long announced a Memorandum of Understanding to purchase 200MW of Sopogy's solar technology for the development of a Concentrating Solar Power project with the Chinese National Grid[23]

In 2011, the Fort Bliss Air Force Base in Texas installed a 40-ton MicroCSP air conditioning system. Johnson Controls and SunQuest implemented the project with 84 SopoNova collectors.[24]

Sopogy Inc., the solar energy company founded in Honolulu by Hawaii entrepreneur Darren Kimura more than a decade ago that was recently shut down, has debts of about $1.2 million, according to a letter to the company’s creditors obtained by Pacific Business News.

Sopogy, which had been in the process of developing solar thermal collectors and other technologies for solar energy installations in various stages of development, testing and preparation for commercialization, has assets that include a bank account balance of $141,565.

Its other assets include remnant furniture, fixtures and equipment housed in a storage facility, customer accounts receivable with a gross value of $233,000, about 200 incomplete solar collectors, patents and product designs, shares representing an 18 percent interest in the Keahole Solar Power solar farm development and other intangible assets, deposits or refunds.

Additionally, Sopogy reported that there are potential claims related to incomplete solar installation projects, in amounts which are yet to be determined. <Pacific Business News, 24 Apr 2014>

Awards[edit]

In January 2008 Sopogy was named the "Venture Capital Deal of the Year,"[25][26]

In July 2008 Sopogy was awarded the New Product of the Year Award[27] from the National Society of Professional Engineers for its SopoNova 4.0 product. This was the first solar technology to have received the award. Past recipients include Boeing for the 777 and Mercedes Benz for the M-Class.

In September 2008 Sopogy was selected as a finalist for Platt's Global Energy Awards[28]

In 2008 Sopogy won the Pacific Business News' Business Leadership Award for Innovative Company of the Year[29]

Also in 2008 it was the recipient of Hawaii Governor's Innovation Award.[30]

In March 2009, Sopogy's SopoNova 4.0 product was selected as the Winner of Plant Engineering Magazine's[31] Product of the Year 2008 Gold Award.[32]

In 2010, Sopogy was awarded the Hawaii Business Magazine Smallbiz Success Award[33]

In 2011, Sopogy won the APEC 2011 Hawaii Business Innovation Showcase award for Honolulu[34]

In 2012, Sopogy was awarded the "Deal of the Year" by the Hawaii Venture Capital Association[35]

Investors[edit]

The company has secured 5 rounds of venture capital investment totaling over $40 million including its most recent Series E financing led by Mitsui & Co, Ltd. a financial investor based in Tokyo, Japan and including 3M, Sempra Energy and MEMC/SunEdison.[36] Past investors include eBay founder Pierre Omidyar[37]

In 2007 Sopogy was authorized $10 million in Special Purpose Revenue Bonds by the State of Hawaii[38] and in 2008 the company received an additional $35 million.[39]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Desalination Pilot Projects Harnesses Solar Power
  2. ^ Sopogy etymology
  3. ^ Sopogy Expands to Silicon Valley office
  4. ^ Hawaiian Firm Shrinks Solar Thermal Power
  5. ^ SEGS
  6. ^ MicroCSP in Idaho
  7. ^ MicroCSP(TM)
  8. ^ Sopogy Launches Next Generation of Concentrating Solar Thermal Collector
  9. ^ Solar Electric Generation Systems
  10. ^ SopoNova Revealed
  11. ^ Sopogy New “SopoFlare” Brings Concentrating Solar Power to the Rooftop Market
  12. ^ Sopogy's version of Google Mapts to maximize sun's energy “SopoLite”
  13. ^ Sopogy debuts the World’s first Portable Concentrating Solar Power System called “SopoLite”
  14. ^ http://www.altenergymag.com/news_detail.php?pr_id=2992
  15. ^ http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/article/2008/12/sopogy-inypsa-omniwatt-announce-50-mw-microcsp-plant-54379
  16. ^ http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/article/2009/12/sopogy-inaugurates-2-mw-micro-csp-plant
  17. ^ Solar, OTEC power plants planned to energize NELHA
  18. ^ http://www.idc-ei.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=EI227275
  19. ^ Olivarez-Giles, Nathan (20 August 2009). "Using solar heat to power air conditioning". Los Angeles Times. 
  20. ^ http://domesticfuel.com/2010/04/13/sopogy-features-solar-hybrid-electricity-h20-system/
  21. ^ http://www.masdar.ae/en/mediaCenter/newsDesc.aspx?News_ID=149&fst=mc&nws=1&MenuID=55&CatID=44
  22. ^ http://www.azocleantech.com/details.asp?newsID=12812
  23. ^ "Sopogy to get China National Utility work". 14 December 2010. 
  24. ^ http://www.staradvertiser.com/multimedia/photo_galleries/viewer/?galID=117874719&photo=2
  25. ^ Sopogy Inc. named Venture Capital Deal of the Year
  26. ^ Energy Entrepreneurship - The Next Big Wave
  27. ^ NSPE New Product of the Year
  28. ^ Global Energy Awards
  29. ^ Business Innovation Awards
  30. ^ Sopogy Receives Governor's Innovation Award
  31. ^ Plant Engineering
  32. ^ Sopogy Receives Gold Plant Engineering Product of the Year Award 2008
  33. ^ Hawaii Business Magazine 2010 Smallbiz Success Awards
  34. ^ http://www.staradvertiser.com/news/breaking/128715808.html?id=128715808
  35. ^ http://hvca.org/?p=589
  36. ^ PV, Tech. PV Tech http://www.pv-tech.org/news/sopogys_series_e_financing_round_led_by_mitsui |url= missing title (help). Retrieved 28 November 2012. 
  37. ^ PV, Tech. http://gigaom.com/2008/05/29/sopogy-scores-9m-funding-from-omidyar-hawaiian-investors/.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  38. ^ http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/session2008/bills/HB334_CD1_.pdf
  39. ^ http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/session2008/bills/SB3190_hd1_.htm

External links[edit]