eSolar, the startup that says it’s using computing and algorithms to produce low-cost solar thermal gear, says it has signed a commercial contract with Sundrop Fuels, a young solar startup backed by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. eSolar, which was recently backed by $130 million in funding from Google, Idealab and Oak Investment Partners, is supplying the Colorado-based Sundrop with its heliostat and suntracking technology in a “multi-million dollar deal;” Sundrop will use the technology in a “process heat application.”
Sundrop has been pretty quiet on its technology, and even in this press release the company doesn’t given many details on how it works. Sun Mountain Capital, which also backed the company, said Sundrop’s “Solar Reduction of Carbon Dioxide or (SOLAREC), “produces fuels while simultaneously producing electricity from free and renewable solar energy.” That fuel is reportedly hydrogen, and by heating up CO2 they can split the molecule to produce carbon monoxide, which can be combined with water to make hydrogen.
The idea behind Sundrop is to supposedly generate clean power cheaply, produce hydrogen that could be used as a fuel, and use CO2 for something productive. It’s a bit unusual for Sundrop to start talking publicly via another company’s announcement, but we’re planning on talking to the company more this week.