The U.S. Department of Energy has given its CSP Today Award to San Francisco-based Sener Group for contributing to the development of thermal storage systems for solar thermal plants.

The U.S. Department of Energy has given its CSP Today Award to San Francisco-based Sener Group for its contribution to the development of the next generation of thermal storage systems for solar thermal plants.

Sener, an engineering company, leads a project to develop a high temperature solid-storage concept that uses graphite as part of energy storage solution for concentrated solar power technologies (CSPs).

Sener has developed a molten-salt heat storage system that enables plants with the technology to continue to produce power when there is no sunlight, either at night or when solar radiation is very weak. Currently, Sener has a portfolio of 12 concentrated solar power projects, two of which are:
  • Andasol 1, in Granada, the first thermosolar station in the world to use a molten-salt heat storage system commercially.
  • Gemasolar, in Spain, to be commissioned in 2011. When it becomes active, it will be the world’s first commercial plant to be driven by a molten-salt receiver tower with thermal storage system.
The system, which increases the plant yield of facilities without thermal storage, “guarantees” a continuous supply of electricity, overcomes intermittences and renders it possible to adapt output to power demand.

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