The most unusual power plant that can be seen from space

Electricity generation is one of the most importanttasks recently. Smartphones, home appliances, portable electric vehicles, electric vehicles and other consumers require a constant increase in electricity generation. Traditional fossil sources (oil, gas) are gradually depleted and in a few decades will end completely. Yes, and using them in the modern world is somehow wrong. The mass transition to renewable energy sources is not moving fast enough, although it is gaining momentum. We often consider unusual methods for generating electricity, but there are also completely unusual ones that few people know about. And if someone knows about their existence, then he does not know how they work. For example, how does the “candle that will never go out” burn? Now I'll tell you about it. This is truly an epic building.

This power plant is simply amazing.


  • 1 The coolest solar power plant
  • 2 How much power does Gemasolar produce
  • 3 How a solar power plant works
  • 4 Can a solar power plant work at night
  • 5 Who built the Gemasolar itself

The coolest solar power plant

Gemasolar is the world's first commercial-scale solar power plant with a central receiver tower. It is also the first solar power plant in the world to use the technology heat storage of molten salt. It is located in the city of Fuentes de Andalusia inprovince of Seville in Spain. Its installed capacity is 19.9 MW. This is comparable to the level of energy that is produced at a nuclear power plant.

Small concentrated power plantsolar energy (CSP) was put into operation in April 2011. Its official opening took place in October 2011. The complex is owned by Torresol Energy Investments, a joint venture between Abu Dhabi-based renewable energy company Masdar (40%) and Spanish engineering firm Sener (60%).

When will our sun die?

How much power does Gemasolar produce

Annual energy production is 110 GWh. This is enough to ensure environmentallyclean energy for 25,000 homes. As a result of the deployment of this complex, and taking into account the amount of energy generated, it turns out to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide emissions by about 30,000 tons per year.

This is how Gemasolar looks from space

Naturally, such an object cannot be cheap, and its construction cost 171 million euros. Funding came from various sources. Investors included the European Investment Bank, Banco Popular and Banesto ICO.

How a solar power plant works

The Gemasolar power plant consists of a central tower receiver, a heliostat field and a molten salt heat storage system. The solar field is created by setting 2650 heliostats (large reflective panels) on 185 hectares of land.

Heliostats are made of steel stamped surfaces with an area of ​​approx. 40 square meters each. They are mounted in an array around the center receiver tower. height 140 m.

How solar panels work.

Molten Salt Storage System - Itema separate pride of the creators of this power plant. It includes cold and hot salt storage tanks in which it can be stored for 15 hours. The tanks are made of steel and connected to a central tower.

The light reflected by the panels is concentrated on this tower.

The temperature of molten salt in cold storage tanks is approximately 290-300ºC. Salts at temperature 565ºC stored in hot tanks. The tanks have a diameter of up to 23 m and a height of up to 14 m.

The central tower receives concentrated solar radiation reflected by heliostats. Mirrors increase the radiation strength by 1000 times and reflect it to the central receiver.The heliostats are connected by a network of 26 rings. To control each of them has its own engine. Those, in turn, are programmed so that the sun's rays are reflected on the tower throughout the day and heat it up.

Central receiver at the top of the towerfilled with cold salt, which is heated by radiation reflected by heliostats. As a result, the salt becomes liquid due to the high temperature. In liquid form, it is fed into a hot storage tank and then into a heat exchanger. As a result, liquid salt condenses to form steam, which drives a turbine to generate electricity.

How the Earth can serve as a source of inexhaustible energy.

Can a solar power plant work at night

The melt storage tank allows avoid excess heat loss. It is used to generate electricity when solar heat and radiation is insufficient or unavailable. For example, in cloudy weather or at night.

The construction of this power plant took approximately two years and was started in February 2009. In April 2011, the facility was connected to the electrical network.

One mirror is enough to light the paper, and what such panels are capable of is even hard to imagine.

Who built the very Gemasolar

During the construction, equipment from various manufacturers was used. So, Foster Wheeler was responsible for the design and supply of the 17 MW steam generator for the central tower, Emypro, together with Outokumpu manufactured steel tanks for hot and cold storage, Nord Drivesystems supplied 5300 heliostat gearmotors, and the communication network was built by companies Schneider Electric and Hirschmann Electronics.

Astronomers say the Sun is in a midlife crisis. But what does it mean?

Thanks to sophisticated technology and the usethe most advanced developments at the time of construction, it was possible to achieve a 1.5-3-fold increase in productivity compared to traditional renewable energy sources.

Many energy sources work only incertain time. For example, tidal power plants need water movement, windmills need wind, and solar panels only work during the day and are demanding on clear weather.

Even with such elaborate structures, we we can't in a few years to get rid of dependence on fossil energy sources. But such developments make clean energy more accessible, and its mass application closer.