Glasspoint Solar, a US maker of solar steam generators for the oil and gas industry, will start work on its giant solar park project in Oman from this month, said a report.
The 1GW solar-thermal project, which aims to turn water into steam for injection into the Amal oilfield, is due for completion in late 2017, reported the Muscat Daily.
The process, known as enhanced oil recovery (EOR), involves heating the ground to improve the flow of heavy crude to the surface, it stated.
The California-based company is jointly working with Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) on the project. The project is a landmark deal in terms of not just size but also because it is the first time that solar energy is used to produce oil at a commercial scale. GlassPoint previously did smaller pilot projects involving solar and oil.
To be named Miraah (mirror in Arabic), the project comes after the success of the pilot project in Amal.
As per the deal, PDO will finance and own the project to be developed at a cost of $600 million, while GlassPoint will be the technology and engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) provider, said the report. GlassPoint’s steam-making facility will largely be run on the sun’s energy by day and natural gas at night, it added.