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Bill Gates Backs Solar Energy Start-up….Heliogen.

Today, industrial processes like those used to make cement, steel, and other materials are responsible for more than a fifth of all emissions. These materials are everywhere in our lives but we don’t have any proven breakthroughs that will give us affordable, zero-carbon versions of them. If we’re going to get to zero carbon emissions overall, we have a lot of inventing to do. I’m pleased to have been an early backer of Bill Gross’s novel solar concentration technology. Its capacity to achieve the high temperatures required for these processes is a promising development in the quest to one day replace fossil fuel.  

Bill Gates, Gates Ventures

Bill Gates the world’s richest man is joining other investors in backing a new venture which aims to turn sunlight into a source of heat exceeding 1,000C that could help replace fossil fuels.

Heliogen, the clean energy company that is transforming sunlight to create and replace fuels, announced its launch on the 19th November 2019 and that it has, for the first time commercially, concentrated solar energy to exceed temperatures greater than 1,000 degrees Celsius.  At that temperature, Heliogen can replace the use of fossil fuels in critical industrial processes, including the production of cement, steel and petrochemicals, dramatically reducing greenhouse gas emissions from these activities.

Heliogen is a clean energy company focused on eliminating the need for fossil fuels in all sectors of the economy. Heliogen’s mission is to create the world’s first technology that can commercially replace fossil fuels in industrial processes with carbon-free, ultra-high temperature heat from the sun and to transform sunlight into fuels, including hydrogen, at scale – taking a major step towards solving climate change. Its heat technology represents a key technical breakthrough for concentrated solar thermal.  Previous commercial concentrating solar thermal systems have been designed to reach temperatures of up to only 565 degrees Celsius – useful for power generation, but insufficient for many industrial processes.  Many of these processes require much higher temperatures, which have traditionally been reached through the burning of fossil fuels.

The world has a limited window to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We’ve made great strides in deploying clean energy in our electricity system. But electricity accounts for less than a quarter of global energy demand. Heliogen represents a technological leap forward in addressing the other 75 percent of energy demand: the use of fossil fuels for industrial processes and transportation. With low-cost, ultra-high temperature process heat, we have an opportunity to make meaningful contributions to solving the climate crisis.”

Bill Gross, CEO & Founder, Heliogen and Founder & Chairman, Idealab.

Bill Gross, the chief executive and founder of California-based Heliogen, said the company represents a technological leap forward in tackling the emissions from industry and transport that make up 75% of the world’s carbon footprint.

Gross said creating low-cost, ultra-high-temperature process heat gives the company an opportunity to make meaningful contributions to solving the climate crisis.

The technology can generate temperatures high enough to manufacture cement without fossil fuels. Cement production alone accounts for more than 7% of global CO2 emissions – the world’s third largest source of emissions behind oil and coal.  If left unaddressed, cement production would pose a major threat to the targets set by the Paris agreement.

Bill Gates, Gates Ventures

“Today, industrial processes like those used to make cement, steel, and other materials are responsible for more than a fifth of all emissions,” said Bill Gates.  “These materials are everywhere in our lives, but we don’t have any  proven breakthroughs that will give us affordable, zero-carbon versions of them. If we’re going to get to zero-carbon emissions overall, we have a lot of inventing to do.  I’m pleased to have been an early backer of Bill Gross’s novel solar concentration technology.  Its capacity to achieve the high temperatures required for these processes is a promising development in the quest to one day replace fossil fuel.”

For more information visit heliogen.com.