Suryachakra Power Venture has entered into a JV with MAN Solar Millennium of Germany for developing solar thermal power projects in India. The company plans to set up 5 MW solar thermal power plants in Chattisgarh and Maharashtra.
This is good news, because I feel that solar thermal has been the poor cousin of solar PV for long. Perhaps there is no reason for it to be. The capex for solar thermal is lower than that for solar PV by about 25%, and the capacity factor for solar thermal is about 25% as against 17% for solar PV. Where solar PV scores over thermal is in operational costs (solar PV opex is very low, for solar thermal it could be as high as 4 cents per KWh. If you look at levelized costs (total costs including amortization of capex), solar thermal still comes out cheaper than PV. So, there is all the reason to explore solar thermal as much as we are excited about PV.