Sopogy technology cools Sempra Energy learning center

Sopogy technology to be used in California project

Pacific Business News (Honolulu)

Honolulu-based solar energy company Sopogy Inc. will be part of a California demonstration project that aims to showcase six new solar technologies.

Nine of Sopogy’s patented solar concentrators, which the company designs, engineers and manufactures in Hawaii, will be used to run air conditioning units on a 45,000 square-foot building in Downey, Calif.

Sopogy’s technology, resembling large silver troughs, uses mirrors and lenses to concentrate the sun’s rays on fluids, creating steam that turns turbines to generate electricity.

The demonstration project was announced Friday by the Southern California Gas Co. and San Diego Gas & Electric.

The California utilities said they will be testing solar technologies at different California sites over the next 18 months. The utilities are testing five other solar technologies, and says the project should help accelerate the commercialization of the new technologies.

The names of the other five technology companies were not released.

Sopogy — the name combines the words solar, power and technology — was launched in 2007 after five years of research and development. It was spun off from Energy Industries, which Darren Kimura founded in 1994.

Darren Kimura recognized at 2009 Hawaii Legislature Opening Ceremony

Text of House Minority Leader Lynn Finnegan’s speech

Watch Darren Kimura of Sopogy on Hawaii Fox Affiliate

Video at:

By Kirk Matthews
Story Updated: Jan 20, 2009 at 5:47 PM HST

On Be Green 2, we feature a company that has invented a brand new solar technology – right here in Hawaii.
The company is called Sopogy and it’s building a 500 kilowatt project at the Natural Energy Laboratories of Hawaii in Kona. The proprietary technology is brand new.
“And what’s unique about our technology is we use mirrors to concentrate and intensify the energy of the sun to really make a more efficient solar solution.”

The idea is to use the sun’s heat in much the way solar panels are used to heat water for a residential system – – with one basic difference. The water temperature goes up to 400 degrees.

“Once we can get our temperatures to a level that high, that allows us to spin a turbine to create electrical power. So it’s taking the same basic premise as hot water heating but using it more efficiently because we use mirrors and lenses and what not.”

The Hawaii-based company has been developing this technology since 2002. Since then, it has been expanding.
“We’ve been deploying different technologies around the world ever since. We’ve got projects currently in the middle east, in Spain, California, Washington state. But our home, the company’s home, is here in Hawaii,” said Darren Kimura, President and CEO of Sopogy, Inc.

The solar farm could generate enough electricity to power hundreds of island homes. And it decreases our dependence on fossil fuels.
“In addition to that, it’s also very clean, it creates green jobs. Our company in the next ten years, is hoping to create several hundred green-collar jobs as we call them for people in Hawaii. And that’s just the projects in Hawaii.”
From here on, Kimura believes, the sky’s the limit when it comes to using renewable energy. “Moving our vehicles over to electric vehicles and really living an energy-efficient electric lifestyle that comes from renewable energy resources like geothermal, wind and concentrating solar power.”

Hawaii Business Magazine – Darren T. Kimura – My Favorite Things

My Favorite Things: Darren Kimura

By Jason Ubay

Darren Kimura, president and CEO of the high-tech energy company Sopogy, spends up to 90 percent of his time on the road. All that traveling forces Kimura to find ways to be more productive. “The more efficient I can be, the happier I am,” he says.


Apple’s iPhone was cool enough, but inefficient for his purposes, Kimura says. So he switched to AT&T’s Tilt. He finds it easier and more accurate to type on the slideout QWERTY keyboard than on the iPhone’s touchpad. Of course, it’s got the standard Smart-phone capabilities such as video, photo-capturing and wi-fi.


As a world traveler, Kimura is always on the lookout for quick, convenient sustenance, so he often hits Starbucks for coffee. And this efficient executive has no time for an upside-down venti caramel macchiato. Send his coffee out black.


Kimura feeds his entrepreneurial appetite by reading all about Apple Inc. and its founder, Steve Jobs. He recently read The Apple Way, by Jeffrey Cruikshank. Although Kimura isn’t a complete Apple diehard, he does own a MacBook Air, which takes up less space than most books, like the one he’s currently reading: Thomas Friedman’s Hot, Flat and Crowded.