Solar energy manufacturer Stirling Energy Systems files for bankruptcy

Stirling Energy Systems (SES), maker of the SunCatcher concentrated solar power (CSP) technology, has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

News reports said the company was unable to compete with the cost of photovoltaics (PV) and filed bankruptcy documents with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware on September 23.

SES was slated to supply its 25 kW Suncatcher technology for the 850 MW Calico Solar project in California, but project owners K Road Power Holdings decided that 750 MW of the project would use PV instead of CSP. Following that decision, Pacific Gas & Electric (NYSE: PCG) terminated its power purchase agreement for Calico.

The developer reportedly sought a loan guarantee for the scaled-down 663 MW project but had not yet received one. Tessera previously owned the Calico project and sold that in December.

SES was also going to supply the technology for Tessera’s 709 MW Imperial Valley Solar project, but Tessera sold the project to AES Solar, a joint venture owned by AES Corp. and Riverstone Holdings LLC, in February. AES abandoned the plant after San Diego Gas & Electric terminated its PPA.

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