L'concentrated solar energyit is still an under-exploited resource. The technology ofconcentrating thermodynamic solar powerwith parabolic collectors saw the inauguration of the first large commercial plant here in Europe, in Spain, in a location not far from Seville, this is where the greatSolar tower.
The Solar Tower in Spainan example of concentrating solar technology
In concentrated solar park Spanish, nicknamedPlanta Solar 10 (PS10), asolar towerwhich is capable of producing 23,400 megawattors (MWh) of powerper year. The tower produces electricity using 624 large moving mirrors calledheliostats.Each mirror has the task of projecting to thesolar towera strong light beam.
Each heliostat has an area of 120 square meters thanks to whichconcentratesthe sun's rays at the top of thesolar tower.
- How does the solar tower in Spain?
Theresolar tower in Spainit is 115 meters high and has a generator, a steam turbine and a “solar receiver”. The solar receiver provides the energy to activate the steam turbine, the turbine in turn drives the generator that produces electricity.
The solar receiver, placed in the highest part of thetower, produces saturated steam at 275 ° C. The ability of theSpanish solar toweris 11 MW and has a capacity factor of 24% with an energy conversion efficiency of about 17%.
– Where is the solar tower in Spain?
The PS10 is located in Andalusia, 20 km west of the center of Seville. Exactly it is located atSanlucar la Mayor, in the province of Seville.
The position in which thesolar tower enjoys at least 9 hours of sunshine on a daily basis for 320 days a year. From late spring and throughout the summer, the hours of sunshine on a daily basis become 15.
– How much did thesolar tower in Spain?
The plant for the production ofconcentrated solar energyPS10 saw a long design period, and it took almost 4 years to complete the installation work.
The estimated cost is over 35 million euros but already during the setting up of thesolar concentration plant energy sales agreements had been signed: every MW of energy produced byconcentration plant Spanish is fed into the electricity network and paid 271 euros for a turnover of 6,341,400 euros per year (over 6.3 million euros).
The plant is managed by Abengoa Solar, a large private militant industry in the field ofsoalre energy.
The solar towers today
ThereSolar tower in Spainjust described was the forerunner of this technology. Also in Spain, a similarly concentrated plant was activated, the PS20 (Planta Solar20) even larger and with 1,255 heliostats.
The PS20 was also completed by Abengoa Solar and this time theSolar towerit is 165 meters high. The operating mechanism is similar and theSolar towerof the PS20 manages to produce 48 GWxh per year, generating and meeting the energy needs of about 180,000 homes.
Before the construction of the PS20, the PS10 was the largest concentration plant with solar tower in the world. Today, the PS20 has also been supplanted thanks to the installation of the California solar towerIvanpah Solar Power Facility (shown in the photo above) which became operational in February 2014.