Another Pathway to Large-Scale Power Generation: Concentrating Solar Power

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Abstract

Concentrating solar power (CSP) is the major technology that using sunlight to generate electricity. CSP technologies use concentrating optics to generate high temperatures that are used to drive conventional steam or gas turbines. It is generally considered central generation technology, rather than a source of distributed generation. It is predominantly a utility-scale source of power because it generates a large amount of power at one location, with transmission and distribution to the various points of use. It consist three main basic systems, such as parabolic trough systems, dish/engines systems, and power tower systems. Variants of these systems are also being considered, such as the compact linear Fresnel reflector system, which uses flat mirrors with a Fresnel lens to concentrate the solar thermal energy. Parabolic trough systems concentrate the sun energy through long, rectangular, curved mirrors.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)364-366
Number of pages3
JournalMRS Bulletin
Volume33
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2008

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-550-43483

Keywords

  • concentrating solar power
  • dish/engine systems
  • parabolic trough
  • power tower

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