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EU Funding for Solutions to Decarbonise Heating and Cooling Market

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on November 19, 2017
Horizon 2020A search for ‘solar thermal’ in a recently published 195-page document titled Secure, Clean and Efficient Energy will not return encouraging results (see the attached document). The publication by the Horizon 2020 Work Programme 2018-2020 shows only 6 entries in total. “Solar thermal is definitely not a priority of the new programme,” said Daniel Mugnier, Head of R&D at French engineering services company Tecsol. “And even if the European Solar Thermal Technology & Innovation Platform were to try to promote several hot topics, there’s only one call [LC-SC3-RES-7-2019 on solar process heat] dedicated to the technology.”
 

Italy: 10,000 m² ORC-Connected Fresnel and Parabolic Trough Fields

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on September 19, 2017
Fresnel Collector Field ItalyItaly’s feed-in tariff for medium-size concentrating solar power plants has supported the installation of a 10,000 m² Fresnel collector array in Sardinia (see photo). The mirrors have been in operation since spring this year and are connected to an Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) unit with 600 kW of nominal electric power. Construction for a second demonstration system, a 5 MWth parabolic trough field linked to an ORC turbine, is currently underway in Sicily. Both installations heat thermal oil to between 250 and 300 °C and use it to transfer heat directly from the solar panels to the ORC units by Italian-based Turboden, bringing their electrical efficiency to up to 25 %.
Photo: CSP-F (FERA Group)
 

MENA/Chile: Concentrating Solar Benchmark Costs

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on August 25, 2017
SunShotA tender for 94.5 USD/MWhel in Dubai and an R&D initiative called SunShot in the United States have shown how the cost of concentrated solar power (CSP) could be lowered at a steady pace thanks to economies of scale and optimised manufacturing and operation. Though the solar power market has been the driver for most of these developments, their outcomes are likewise relevant to solar thermal, where concentrating technologies have been used to provide heating or cooling for industrial processes. Two recent webinars organised by Spanish-based consultancy ATA Insights and focused on CSP in the MENA region and Chile had developers and researchers discuss the main drivers for cost cutting and the technology outlook in the short and medium term. The chart illustrates the SunShot aim to bring down the cost of parabolic trough collectors from around 200 USD/m² to 75 USD/m².
Source: Department of Energy, USA
 

Conference on Small-scale Concentrating Solar Power and and final InSun Workshop on Solar Process Heat in Sardinia

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on August 1, 2015

The final Industrial Workshop on solar process heat - Results and findings of the EU FP7 Project InSun will be held together with a conference on small-scale CSP at the Auditorium Technology Park of Sardena Richerche on September 25th, 2015 (9am to 5.30pm) in Pula/Sardinia, Italy.

Water Policy Considerations: Deploying Solar Power in the State of Arizona (2010)

Submitted by Raquel Ponte Costa on June 20, 2015

This report on concentrating solar power (CSP) was produced by the United States Senate Office of Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona. The report focuses on the effect of CSP on the supply of water in Arizona. The report finds that conventional CSP production would be back overall for the state of Arizona because CSP uses a much larger supply of water than other renewable energy sources. As there are other renewable energy options, the report says that CSP would not be an appropriate solar energy source for Arizona because it would lean to heavily on its water supply.

A Parabolic Trough Solar Power Plant Simulation Model (2003)

Submitted by Raquel Ponte Costa on June 15, 2015

This report was released by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in 2003. It provides an overview of the Parabolic Trough model with details regarding performance, cost and economic assessment of design and technology variations. They compare modeled parabolic trough numbers with actual outputs through cost models and performance models, as well as going over predictions and assumptions based off of their model.

Key Suppliers in Solar Thermal Power Value Chain and Venture Capital Companies (2009)

Submitted by Raquel Ponte Costa on June 15, 2015

This document was released by Clixoo Renewable Energy Research in 2009. It starts with a background on solar thermal and the different applications of solar thermal energy. It also explains a solar thermal value chain, which breaks down the process of producing solar thermal systems, and the companies involved in the process. You can see a table of all system components and the materials it takes to make them.

Solar Thermal Technology (2005)

Submitted by Raquel Ponte Costa on May 31, 2015

This presentation is from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) OpenCourseWare program on Sustainable Energy. It provides an overview of solar thermal technology including power towers, solar thermal cooling and storage technologies. Different concentrating solar thermal technologies such as solar chimneys, parabolic troughs and heliostat fields are all briefly detailed with graphs and key points about their history and economic viability.

Denmark: Combined CSP and Flat Plate Collector System Supplies Solar District Heating

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on January 30, 2015
Solar District Heating Tars7 January 2015 was the starting date for the construction of a unique solar heat plant for district heating in the Danish village of Tårs, 30 km north of Aalborg. It combines parabolic trough collectors and flat plate collectors in order to cover 30 % of the heat demand by the village’s district heating network, without the need for seasonal storage. The system is expected to come into operation during the second quarter of 2015. 
Photo: Aalborg CSP
 

Solar Thermal and Concentrated Solar Power Barometer (2014)

Submitted by Raquel Ponte Costa on October 31, 2014

This report published by the French organization EurObserv’ER provides an overview of the Solar Thermal and Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) markets in Europe in 2013.  The first section of the report is dedicated to CSP. After analyzing the global and European markets, the barometer focuses on the development of the CSP technologies in Spain, Italy and France.  The second part covers the solar thermal market.  The barometer explains that for the 5th year in a row the European solar thermal sector is facing a slowdown. In 2013, the market decreased by 13.2% compared to 2012.

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