Company SolarReserve, which develops projects in the field of solar energy, plans to build ten solar-thermal power plants in the U.S. under the title Sandstone. The project involves the production of from 1,500 to 2,000 MW of energy that will provide electricity to about a million homes.
The project cost $5 billion dollars, and it involves installing about 100 thousand mirrors, and 10 "solar towers". According to CEO Kevin Smith, construction of power plants will begin only after two or three years and create approximately 3,000 new jobs.
Prior to this, the company has already built one station in Nevada — a project known as Crescent Dunes. The plant, launched in late 2015, runs on solar thermal energy and produces approximately 110 MW — enough to provide electricity to approximately 75,000 households. SolarReserve uses for electricity generation molten salt, and the world's first application of this technology in the energy sector.
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The principle of operation of solar thermal power plants consists of the following: sunlight by using large number of mirrors concentrate on the "solar tower" — the heating element, which brings the liquid fluid inside it (in this case molten salt) to the desired temperature. Then, the hot salt is sent to a tank of water, which it turns into steam due to high temperature. And then the steam is used to spin the turbine that produces electricity.
The use of solar energy is one of the main ways a complete transition to renewable energy sought by the United States. Despite the fact that more and more popular in the United States are still the wind turbines, production of solar energy in some States breaks all records: for example, in California this figure rose to 1378%in the last five years. published