Oct 13, 2016: The researchers at Australian National University (ANU) have developed an efficient solar dish with an extremely high sunlight-to-steam conversion rate. The finding comes about as a resourceful hunt for more dependable and efficient green energy production
The researchers claim that the new solar receiver is 97% efficient. As against the photovolatic solar panels, which convert the sun’s rays into electricity directly, this innovative solar dish reflects them back at a receiver, suspended in mid-air, which converts water into steam, according to the researchers. Next, the gas can be used to power a motor and, also stored for a long period of time as molten salts.
Solar dish that has extremely high sunlight-to-steam conversion rate
The new solar receiver module utilizes a top hat design with a small opening and a wide, catch-all brim. Tiny pipes are positioned on the outside, wrapping inwards, to catch the sunlight before the water travels up within the design.
World’s most efficient solar receiver
The research team claim that it is the world’s most efficient solar receiver. The efficient solar dish at ANU is the biggest of its kind, which measures 500 square meters. One of the key highlights is the ability of the reflectors to focus the power of 2,100 suns on the receiver and heat the water to a sweltering 500 degrees.
The core objective is to reduce solar thermal energy costs to 12 cents per kilowatt-hour of power, and if such a feat is obtainable, the technology may as well be used to fuel power stations, reducing humanity’s carbon footprint in the procedure. Eventually the aim of this project is all about slashing the cost of concentrating solar thermal energy, the researchers said.