Category Archives: Concentrated Solar Power

Why is nearly all solar power built where subsidies are the highest?

If solar net energy return is as high as some solar advocates claim, why does solar need any subsidies? And not just U.S. subsidies, it’s subsidies on top of subsidies when you add in that we’re buying Chinese government subsidized … Continue reading

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Taxpayers are paying for a concentrated solar project — Ivanpah– that doesn’t work

Ivanpah in the news: Dvorsky, G. May 21, 2016. The World’s Largest Solar Plant Just Torched Itself. Gizmodo (Australia). Misaligned mirrors are being blamed for a fire that broke out yesterday at the world’s largest solar power plant, leaving the … Continue reading

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The potential role of concentrating solar power in enabling high renewables

[The word “water” appears nowhere in this document, even though that’s a major limiting factor for CSP with thermal storage. Dry cooling is possible, but it lowers the EROI and raises the already way-too-high capital cost. An electric grid that’s … Continue reading

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CSP with thermal energy storage is seasonal, so it can not balance variable power or contribute much power for half the year

Concentrated Solar Power not only needs lots of sunshine, but no humidity, clouds, dust, smog or or anything else that can scatter the sun’s rays.  Above 35 degrees latitude north or south, the sun’s rays have to pass through too … Continue reading

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Concentrated Solar Power: Water Constraints

“Concentrating solar power plants that use wet cooling could significantly increase water demand, consuming up to twice as much water per unit of electricity produced as traditional fossil fuel power plants. Concerns with concentrating solar power plants are particularly acute … Continue reading

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Concentrated Solar Power: location, location, location

Location, Location, Location:   What follows is from: SBC. June 2013. Concentrating Solar Power. SBC Energy Institute. The best sites are between 10° and 40°, South or North. As you can see in the chart below, this makes a huge difference, … Continue reading

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Is there enough renewable energy to replace fossil fuel electricity generation?

NREL. July 2012. U.S. Renewable Energy Technical Potentials: A GIS-Based Analysis. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. This document is a thought experiment that uses GIS mapping to estimate how much renewable power could possibly be generated in each state regardless of … Continue reading

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Solar Thermal ESOI (Energy Stored on Invested)

Barton, N. April 17, 2013. ESOI for solar thermal. http://sunoba.blogspot.com/2013/04/esoi-for-solar-thermal.html Published information is available to evaluate the ESOI score for the most common solar thermal storage technology – a molten 60-40 mixture of sodium and potassium nitrates, commonly known as … Continue reading

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Ivanpah Biggest solar power plant ever – $2.2 billion for only 100 MW

The $2.2 billion dollar Ivanpah Solar power plant generates 100 MW of power when you take the 25% capacity into account (not 400 MW).  That’s enough power for 25,000 to 50,000 homes (not 140,000 as claimed).  There are 116,700,000 households … Continue reading

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Solar 1 and 2 in the United States

Howard Hayden estimates Solar Two would need to take up 127 square miles to produce as much energy as a 1000-MWe power plant does in one year. (Solar Fraud, p. 187). According to Robert Bradley Jr, Solar One was very … Continue reading

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