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“The Persian Gulf of Solar” February 24, 2008

Posted by OldGuy in Alternatives.
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Abengoa Solar will soon begin construction of the world largest solar generation plant, a 280-megawatt plant 50 miles southeast of Phoenix. The plant is expected to be in operation by 2011, and will be producing enough energy for 70,000 homes, in partnership with Arizona Public Service.

Abenga says the solar plant has been named Solana, meaning “a sunny place” in Spanish. The company’s fact sheet says that “the plant will employ a proprietary Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) trough technology developed by Abengoa Solar, and will cover a surface of around 1,900 acres.”

The Solana Generating Station’s technology uses “trackers with high precision parabolic mirrors that follow the sun’s path and concentrate its energy, heating a fluid to over 700 degrees Fahrenheit.” Unlike most solar energy, Solana will use the sun’s heat, not its light, to produce power, and that region of Arizona can reach 120 degrees in the summer.

Abengoa CEO Santiago Seage said the plant will use thousands of giant mirrors to harness the sun’s heat. The plant uses the stored heat to create steam to turn generation turbines. This unique approach will let them store the heat to be able regulate when and how much electricity they will produced, even after the sun has set.

In a CNN story on the new plant, Arizona governor Janet Napolitano said she envisioned the state as a solar powerhouse. She said “There is no reason that Arizona should not be the Persian Gulf of solar energy.”

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1. “The Persian Gulf of Solar” - February 24, 2008

[…] Global Nation Blog wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerpt Abengoa Solar will soon begin construction of the world largest solar generation plant, a 280-megawatt plant 50 miles southeast of Phoenix.  The plant is expected to be in operation by 2011, and will be producing enough energy for 70,000 homes, in partnership with Arizona Public Service Abenga says the solar plant has been named Solana, meaning “a sunny place” in Spanish.  The company’s fact sheet says that “the plant will employ a proprietary Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) trough technology […]


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