SkyFuel Adds More Talent to Top Technology Team
Albuquerque, New Mexico, September 28, 2008: SkyFuel, Inc., the emerging leader in the rapidly growing concentrating solar-thermal electric power industry, continues to build up its already impressive technology team. Today the company proudly introduces five top-tier engineers and scientists, who recently joined the company's R&D roster that is anchored by SkyFuel's Chief Technology Officer Randy Gee, the foremost designer of solar thermal concentrators in the United States.
In less than two years, SkyFuel has assembled a world class team combining concentrating solar power (CSP) technology veterans and cutting edge innovators to execute the company's mission to design and deploy the highest performance, lowest cost solar power systems in the world such as the SkyTrough(TM) glass-free parabolic trough system which will be officially introduced to the global CSP market on October 10, 2008 at SkyFuel's R&D center in Arvada, Colorado.
"With Randy running our technology program we have had no difficulty attracting the best people already in the CSP business, as well as the most talented minds from other fields", said SkyFuel President and CEO Dr. Arnold Leitner speaking from the Company's headquarters in Albuquerque, New Mexico. "The design team now at SkyFuel is un-matched in our industry, and on October 10th, with the unveiling of the SkyTrough(TM), the proof will be in the pudding."
Randy Gee says his colleagues deserve much of the credit: "It is a privilege to work with such remarkable and dedicated people. We collaborate but also challenge each other to produce the best possible designs. The ease and speed at which new ideas are put forth and tested is stunning. There is no better team to make solar thermal power cost competitive with any other form of utility scale electricity generation."
The newest members of SkyFuel's technology team are:
Robert Hawkins, VP Technology and Quality Engineering.
Hawkins has extensive experience managing product design teams for industrial and information technology companies to deliver cost reduction as well as to improve reliability and ease of maintenance. Hawkins carries over experience from Oracle where he oversaw product lifecycle management from pre to post-sales for a broad array of the enterprise software giant's products. Prior to Oracle, he developed and designed industrial equipment from concept for Svedala Industries. At SkyFuel, Hawkins will focus on enhancing the efficiency and manufacturability of the company's solar thermal power designs. Hawkins developed passion for solar when he worked as a contractor for, then, Solargenix.
David LeSeur, Director of Field Operations
LeSeur is an industrial controls and process automation specialist with a proven track record for providing engineering support for automation systems. He has designed, and supported sensor and control systems; mechanical, hydraulic, and pneumatic systems for process automation, process controls in chemical and water treatment, linear displacement transducers, force, acoustic, vibration, vision, thermal, and power monitors for machine and robotic systems, and part handling systems. He has experience in several industries including; power generation (nuclear, coal, solar), water and sewer, steel mill/foundry, automotive, aerospace, paper & pulp, petro-chemical, and pharmaceutical manufacturing. LeSeur is the person behind SkyFuel's hydraulic drives that allow the concentrators to track the Sun.
Benny Marquez, Director of Power Plant Commissioning & Operations
Marquez is one of the most experienced and highly qualified operational managers of major power plants worldwide, particularly utility scale solar thermal power plants. Prior to joining SkyFuel, Marquez oversaw the 2007 start-up of the Acciona/Solargenix 64 MWe "Nevada Solar One" parabolic trough plant near Las Vegas. During the mid to late 90's he managed operations at the Kramer Junction Company's 40M MWe Solar Electric Generating System plant. From 1985 through the Spring of 1992, he helped to usher in the modern era of commercial scale concentrating solar power as the Operations Manager with Luz international, supervising the start-up of SEGS I-VI, in California's Mojave Desert. At SkyFuel, Marquez oversees the commissioning and start-up of all the company's solar thermal power systems.
Stan Pinkowski , VP, Advanced Systems
Pinkowski joins SkyFuel from the Rocketdyne unit of United Technolgies' Hamilton Sundstrand division where for the past decade he managed new business activities in energy, aerospace and related technologies. Prior to his work in business development, Pinkowski spent nearly 20 years in project, systems and development engineering in energy, space and aircraft programs. Pinkowski has extensive experience with solar energy projects at the system, subsystem and equipment levels for solar thermal power towers, parabolic troughs, dish-engine systems, photovoltaic and concentrated photovoltaic systems for distributed and utility-scale power generation. At SkyFuel, Pinkowski plays a principal role in the development of the company's advanced solar thermal power, such the Linear Power Tower(TM), and energy storage systems.
David White, VP, Engineering and Manufacturing
White has 25 years experience in product commercialization, manufacturing, and solar concentrator design. Prior to joining SkyFuel, he designed parabolic troughs for high volume production, followed by system design and project management of commercial industrial process heat systems. As principal researcher, he led a team of engineers and subcontractors on multiple concentrating solar R&D efforts in partnership with National Laboratories and private companies. White established least cost and innovative engineering designs for several concentrating solar technologies including parabolic trough, parabolic dish, heliostats, and concentrating optics for the international space station. At SkyFuel, White plays a principal role in developing the company's advanced solar thermal power and energy storage systems.
These five new members of SkyFuel's technology team enhance the company's dynamic mix of solar industry veterans, including CSP pioneer Dr. David Kearney and controls specialist, Coleman Moore, with new talent such as solar field and thermodynamic cycle expert Andrew McMahan, structural engineer Adrian Farr, and scientist/engineer, Dr. Randy Brost.
SkyFuel is currently implementing its two-phase technology strategy. Phase one is the deployment of the SkyTrough(TM), the highest performance, lowest cost parabolic trough solar collector on the market with key features such as glass-free mirror surfaces, that substantially improve the only concentrating solar power design that is commercially proven and in use today. With the market introduction of the SkyTrough(TM) on October 10, 2008, this first phase has reached a seminal milestone.
Phase two of SkyFuel's strategy centers on a "next-generation" design: the Linear Power Tower(TM), or LPT(TM), which utilizes the fixed receiver tube attributes of linear Fresnel designs while moving to much higher temperatures and thermodynamic efficiency by using molten salt as a heat transfer fluid and for thermal energy storage. Initial commercialization of the Linear Power Tower(TM) is planned for 2011.
SkyFuel, Inc. is emerging as a world leader in the design and deployment of concentrating solar power (CSP) systems. The company delivers large-scale solar thermal power systems that produce steam for power generation, desalination, wastewater treatment, and other industrial applications. SkyFuel's solar fields can be integrated into existing facilities using its proprietary FuelSaver(TM) approach, or can be built as stand-alone solar power plants.
SkyFuel is focused on the development of parabolic trough and linear Fresnel CSP systems, as well as thermal energy storage. With these technologies SkyFuel is creating solar technology that can compete directly with fossil fuels, revolutionizing the energy industry and meeting the energy needs of a modern society while minimizing environmental impact.