US concentrating solar power firm BrightSource Energy has announced that its technology will be deployed under China’s 1.35 gigawatt (GW) CSP commercial demonstration pilot program.

The technology will feature in the 135 MW Huanghe Qinghai Delingha solar thermal power generation project (Delingha), which is one of 20 projects selected under the programme.

The projects, which are expected to be operational by the end of 2018, have been chosen by China’s National Energy Administration (NEA) from out of 109 applications.

BrightSource Energy CEO and chairman David Ramm said: “This pilot program is of unprecedented scale and will drive cost reductions throughout the CSP supply chain, increasing solar thermal’s competitiveness around the world.”

The Delingha project will be the first of BrightSource’s joint venture with Shanghai Electric Group in China.  

The joint venture will leverage both the companies’ contributions to offer engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services and technology for the project.

 In 2014, BrightSource and SEC announced setting up a joint venture to build utility-scale CSP plants in China.

BrightSource-Shanghai Electric joint venture chairperson and BrightSource China general manager Yvonne Huang said: “BrightSource leads the CSP industry with its advanced solar field technology. Our successful experience designing and operating CSP systems – including with thermal storage – complements our partner’s world-class EPC capabilities,”

Located in the Qinghai province in northwest China, the Delingha project is planned for multiple towers with thermal energy storage.

CSP with thermal energy storage is expected to assist in addressing the supply variability introduced by China's rapidly expanding wind and photovoltaic production.

Identifying the importance of CSP, China set a goal for the deployment of 10 gigawatts of CSP with thermal energy storage by 2020 in its most recent 5 year plan.