Technology

Anyone who has felt the warmth of the daytime sky can appreciate Focal Point’s innovation. Focal Point has developed an automatic, self-enclosed, polymer reflector technology capturing more than 50 percent of the sun’s energy.

In particular, Focal Point Energy has developed a commercial-scale product based on thin film reflectors. These devices use a fraction of the material, weight, and embodied energy of metal and glass mirrors, lowering equipment cost and streamlining the entire supply chain.

High-Temperature Solar

When many people think of solar energy, they think of the black panels that turn the sun’s light into electricity: photovoltaics.

Focal Point’s product is based on a very different approach: mirrors that focus both the sun’s light and heat on an absorber, which in turn makes steam or other high-quality heat. This type of solar energy—“concentrated solar thermal energy”—produces high temperatures and typically captures a large share of the sun’s energy.

What is more, the Focal Point Energy Driver™ is specifically designed for large facilities with boiler systems. Unlike earlier systems that required on-site manufacturing, Focal Point systems are manufactured in volume, installed rapidly, and operate at the scale of a single large facility.

Next-Generation Technology

Concentrated solar thermal energy collectors are devices that gather and convert the radiant energy of the sun through a clean thermo-mechanical process.

Our particular type of concentrated solar thermal technology is different from earlier solar thermal systems in three main ways:
• Low-cost materials: Instead of being made of large amounts of heavy and expensive glass and metal, our collectors are made mainly of 30-year plastics.
• High conversion efficiency: Focal Point’s Energy Driver converts the sun’s energy into thermal at more than twice the rate of photovoltaics.
• Installation flexibility: Our lightweight, modular systems can be installed on the ground, on the roof, or even over a parking lot.

Using advanced thin film, polymer-encapsulated reflectors first advanced through the United States’ National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Focal Point’s product embodies the all-weather precision of earlier glass and metal technologies at a fraction of the weight and cost. In fact, the collector weighs only 2.5 pounds per square foot—enabling rapid installation in nearly any environment.

The result is that Focal Point’s Energy Driver™ converts a category-defining 56 percent of the sun’s energy into heat, in a product package that is affordable and designed for wide application.

Proven Product

Focal Point technology uses proven parabolic geometry, has nearly a decade of operating installations, and is made of 30-year polymer composites.

The systems are deployed in pre-engineered arrays of 36 modules, producing approximately 34,000 therms per year.

Our standard warranty is for 10 years and the system is designed to last more than 30 years.

Certification & Specifications

Focal Point’s product has been certified by the Solar Rating and Certification Corporation™, an ANSI-accredited certification organization, in accordance with the relevant standard for concentrating solar thermal energy collectors, SRCC OG-100.

Peak efficiency 56%
Concentration 37:1
Test pressure 160 psi
Single module Typical array
Number of modules 1 module 36 modules
Dimensions 10 ft. x 40 ft. 16250 sq. ft.
Peak energy output 0.52 therms/hr 18.7 therms/hr
Average energy output 95 MMBtu/yr 3400 MMBtu/yr