San Jose Mercury News - 25 Nov 09

Prof. Robert B. Laughlin
Department of Physics
Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305
(Copied 4 Dec 09)

SoCal Desert Highway Landmark Demolished

November 25, 2009

DAGGETT, Calif. - A California desert highway landmark is history.

The central tower for the Solar One and Solar Two demonstration projects was demolished Tuesday.

It stood just east of Barstow near Daggett for nearly three decades and was a familiar site for interstate travelers headed for Las Vegas or Needles.

It hasn't produced any solar power for about 10 years. Southern California Edison's Paul Phelan says it's been empty for about four years.

Demolition began in June on the 51-acre site that included more than 1,800 giant mirrors. The Brea-based firm CST Environmental strapped explosives to two of the tower's legs and brought it down Tuesday.

The projects paved the way for similar technology to be used on a larger scale and foretold the current solar power gold rush.