Torresol Energy, a joint venture between Masdar and SENER, has announced the commissioning of its flagship 19.9MW Gemasolar Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) plant in Seville, Spain.
The world’s first commercial-scale CSP plant featuring a central tower receiver with thermal storage capabilities has commenced supplying electricity to 25,000 homes in the Andalucia region of Spain. The plant is expected to save more than 30,000 tonnes of CO2 emission a year.
The innovative molten salt heat transfer technology deployed at the Gemasolar greenfield independent power project helps avoid fluctuations in power supply through a system that is capable of 15 hours of energy production without sunlight. This accordingly allows for generation of electricity 24 hours a day for many months of the year, even during the hours of darkness or poor daylight during winter.
The Gemasolar plant comprises 2,650 heliostats (mirrors) that stretch approximately 185 hectares. The system is capable of reaching temperatures exceeding 900-degrees Centigrade at the central receiver located at the top of the tower.
The tower technology uses molten salt as a heat transfer medium that reaches temperatures above 500 degrees Centigrade and allows delivering hotter and more pressurized steam to the turbine than the parabolic trough technology, which significantly increases the performance of the overall plant.