Saturday, March 10, 2007

The Power of the Sun

Parabolic Troughs Solar Power Plant
A long row of parabolic mirrors concentrates sunlight on a tube filled with a heat transfer fluid (usually oil). As with the power tower, this heated oil is used to power a conventional steam turbine, or stored for nighttime use. The Kramer Junction SEGS plant, USA, has a total power of 500MW, in the pic above you see a part(160MW) of it. Large Nuclear Power Plants have a power of around 1000MW, Borssele in the Netherlands is 500MW.
The great thing about this SEGS solar power plant is that it makes profit without government support; it can compete with fossil fuels in a free market and is cheaper than Nuclear Energy. This large SEGS solar power plant has a higher efficiency(+-20%) than normal(not made for space) photovoltaic plants(solar cells).

Concentrated Solar Power Tower
Power towers use an array of flat, movable mirrors (called heliostats) to focus the sun's rays upon a collector tower (the target). The high energy at this point of concentrated sunlight is transferred to a working fluid for conversion to electrical energy in a heat engine.
In the picture above you see the Solar Two in Barstow, USA. It's a 10MW Solar Power Tower. 10MW is not that much and this probably isn't a commercial viable project, but I'm still impressed with the power of the Sun and how we can use it.Here(kmz file) are a few Nuclear, Solar and Wind Power Plants I marked in Google Earth.

9 comments:

cybrbeast said...

Cool stuff. Nice pictures too.
I'm quite amazed at the power output of that solar plant. Too bad it's only feasible for very sunny places.

wiki said...

indeed cool stuf to bad the google earth link didn't worked for me.
i'm going to try if updating my google earth will work.

to bad this wouldn't work for the Netherlands to less sun. And the free land space is allot harder to find and probley more expensive then in the usa.

we should stick to wind power plants or hydroelectric power plants in the sea or on the big rivers.

Annom said...

The link should work now.

Annom said...

Architects can do a lot for consumption reduction. This school in the UK does not have a heating system. It is fully heated by direct solar energy and body heat.

wiki said...

it works now! nice google earth links.

funny that the USA is doing that mutch on green energy..and kinda strange that denmark got a big field of solar collectors. don't think there is mutch sun there.

Intrestting skool you putted there. i wonder how mutch energy they spent in cooling the building in the summer.

Alot of office buildings in the Netherlands spend more energy on cooling there buildings then on heating it.

a pimp named slick said...

Bt cybr, we do have a lot of sunny places! What about the Sahara?

cybrbeast said...

Yeah, the Sahara is a good place, but then you have the problem of power infrastructure and transport.

Wiki, if the building has a good design, good insulation, then in the summer it should also keep heat out. Or if the windows and corridors are well designed, you could get a purposely designed draft through the building which would cool.

wiki said...

i know cyber, but the picture of that skool didn't look like it. but indeed need to see more detail to know that for sure

wiki said...

i know cyber, but the picture of that skool didn't look like it. but indeed need to see more detail to know that for sure