Chile opens solar plant built for Minera El Tesoro in Atacama
Nov 30, 2012 - Chile's energy minister, Jorge Bunster, opened yesterday a concentrated solar plant in the Atacama desert that will supply 25 GWh of heat a year to local copper miner Minera El Tesoro.
Built by Spanish renewables and engineering company Abengoa (MCE:ABG), this is the first solar plant in Chile using parabolic trough technology, the energy ministry said.
The plant consists of 1,280 collectors on 5.5 ha (13.6 acres) in Sierra Gorda municipality. It cost USD 15 million (EUR 11.5m) and is expected to reduce El Tesoro's diesel consumption for SX-EW heaters by 55%.
El Tesoro, owned by Chilean copper group Antofagasta Minerals, the mining division of Antofagasta (LON:ANTO), produced 97,100 tonnes of copper cathodes last year.
(USD 1 = EUR 0.769)
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