Carrizo Energy Solar Farm

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The Carrizo Energy Solar Farm was a proposed 177 megawatt (MW) solar thermal power plant, to be built by Ausra in California's Carrizo Plain, near Simmler. The location gets less sun than the Mojave Desert, where several other solar thermal plants are under consideration, but is near an existing transmission line from Diablo Canyon Power Plant, reducing the cost and time needed to construct the plant.[1]

The $550 million[2] power plant would have provided enough power for 60,000 homes, and Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) entered into a contract to buy all the power from the power plant. Ausra claimed its technology can deliver power at 10.4 cents per kilowatt-hour (¢/kW·h).[3] Ausra planned to have the plant generating power by 2010, using Ausra's Compact Linear Fresnel Reflector (CLFR) solar technology.[4][5]

In November 2009, Ausra announced that it had sold its options to the 640 acres (260 ha) of land to First Solar and canceled its contract with PG&E. First Solar will use some of the land for its Topaz Solar Farm.[6][7][8]


  1. ^ Kilcrease, April (2007-11-05). "Solar Startup Ausra Inks $1B Deal With PG&E". Red Herring. Archived from the original on 2008-05-13. Retrieved 2008-08-19. 
  2. ^ Nauman, Matt (October 23, 2008). "Ausra's day in the sun: Palo Alto solar start-up opens plant near Bakersfield". San Jose Mercury News. Retrieved 2008-10-24. 
  3. ^ St. John, Jeff (October 23, 2008). "Ausra's First U.S. Solar-Thermal Plant Lights Up". Greentech Media. Archived from the original on October 25, 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-24. 
  4. ^ Kanellos, Michael (November 5, 2007). "PG&E links with Ausra for 177 megawatts of solar thermal power". Cnet News. Retrieved 2008-10-24. 
  5. ^ Kho, Jennifer (November 5, 2007). "Ausra to Build 177-Megawatt Solar-Thermal Plant". Greentech Media. Retrieved 2008-10-24. 
  6. ^ Woody, Todd (November 5, 2009). "Ausra Sells Planned Plant to First Solar". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-11-05. 
  7. ^ Sneed, David (November 5, 2009). "Solar power company drops out of plans for Carrizo Plain in eastern San Luis Obispo County". The Tribune. Retrieved 2009-11-05. 
  8. ^ Wang, Ucilia (November 5, 2009). "First Solar Buys Land Option From Ausra for Topaz Project". Greentech Media. Retrieved 2009-11-05. 

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