Behold: The World's First 24/7 Solar Plant is Up and Running (Video)

Video by Tony Seba

Earlier this week, I spoke with Kevin Smith, the CEO of Solar Reserve, about the vast potential of concentrated solar power. The grand advantage of solar thermal is that it can serve as baseload power -- CSP can store energy, often in molten salt, for use when the sun's not shining. Above, check out the video of the new Gemasolar plant -- the world's first commercial scale CSP array.

Here are the deets on the system ...From Tony Seba's piece in Forbes, The World's First 24/7 (Baseload) Solar Plant:

Gemasolar is a 19.9-MW plant with a 15-hour 'battery'. Gemasolar's expected production is 110,000 MWh per year--or about enough to fully power 25,000 households. Gemasolar to produce electricity about 6,400 hours per year - a capacity factor of 75%. Gemasolar's power tower has a height of 140 meters (459.3 feet.)

The receiver on top of the tower is like a radiator that is heated to a temperature of about 565 degrees Celsius (1,050 degrees Farenheit) by the sunlight reflected by 2,650 heliostats with a total reflective surface of about 300,000 square meters (3.32 million square feet.)

Ah, it's nice to see the ever-increasing commercial viability of large scale renewables, ain't it?

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