The American subsidiary of a German mirror manufacturer, Flabeg Solar produces mirrors for “concentrating solar power projects” and other solar technologies.
It lists two ongoing concentrated solar power projects, one in California and one in Nevada, as its customers.
Pennsylvania helped the mirror manufacturer build its plant near Pittsburgh with $9 million in grants and loans. The Obama administration awarded Flabeg $10.2 million in tax credits, according to the Post-Gazette.
It is unclear if Flabeg ever used the tax credits. Flabeg’s website indicates it supplied both the Genesis Solar Energy Project and the Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project with mirrors.
The Department of Energy provided a $737 million loan guarantee to help develop the Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project in Nevada. The project uses a “molten salt tower” to capture and store the energy. Its owner, SolarReserve, boasts it will be the “largest solar power project of its kind in the world.”
Construction began on the project in 2011. SolarReserve and the Nevada Office of Energy predict the Crescent Dunes project will come online in 2013.
SolarReserve denied that Flabeg’s bankruptcy would affect its operations. “Flabeg is a supplier of ‘flat glass’ mirrors and there are a number of alternate suppliers in the market that can be utilized to fill the order if necessary,” SolarReserve CEO Kevin Smith said in a statement.
“We don’t expect any significant issues,” Smith said, praising the project as “a tremendous success story for the United States developed technology and the U.S. Department of Energy’s loan guarantee program.”
The Genesis Solar Energy Project in California likewise received financial help from the Department of Energy. The department partially guaranteed an $852 million loan to support the development of the Genesis project, according to the department’s website.
NextEra Energy Resources, the developer of the Genesis project, built the solar energy project in a flood-prone California valley, which performed as expected in the middle of last year, flooding and inflicting “massive” damage on the Genesis project.
The California Energy Commission indicates that the Genesis project is just over 43 percent complete. A NextEra spokesman said the project will come online in two phases, half at the end of 2013 and the other half in late 2014.
Flabeg’s bankruptcy would not impact the Genesis project and it would not need a new supplier of mirrors, the spokesman said. Flabeg’s website indicates that the mirrors’ “delivery period” was in 2011.