Gemasolar by Torresol Energy is the world’s first commercial-scale CSP plant featuring central tower receiver and molten salt storage system technology
Torresol Energy, a joint venture between Masdar – Abu Dhabi’s leading future energy company – and SENER, the leading Spanish engineering and technology group, received the ‘Commercialized Technology Innovation of the Year’ CSP Today US award, thanks to the innovative solutions developed in Gemasolar, the world’s first commercial-scale CSP plant featuring central tower receiver and molten salt storage system technology. Gemasolar, the 19.9 MW flagship project of Torresol Energy, was commissioned last May.
The award was presented on June 28 during the fith edition of the Concentrated Solar Power Summit held between June 28 and 30 in Las Vegas (USA). Felicia Belows, Senior Vice President of Development of Torresol Energy in the US, received the award. After the event, she declared: “I am very proud of receiving this awad that represents for us the acknowledgement to a challenge achieved like having Gemasolar, a unique plant, already operational’.
Masdar Power, one of the five integrated units of Masdar, is a leading international developer and operator of renewable power generation projects in Abu Dhabi. It also strategically invests in technology relevant to utility-scale renewable energy, focusing especially on Concentrating Solar Power (CSP), photovoltaic solar energy and on- and offshore wind energy.
Director of Masdar Power Frank Wouters said: “Torresol’s 19.9MW Gemasolar plant employs the most innovative storage technology fully integrated into a renewable energy power plant to date. The CSP Today US award for Torresol is a major recognition of the leadership role of Masdar and the UAE in the solar power sector. The award will further strengthen our commitment to clean energy and encourage us to set higher targets of excellence while expanding our business scope.”
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. Besides, the plant is able to supply electricity to a population of 25,000 households and save 30,000 tons/year of CO2 emissions.
SENER was responsible for providing the technology, the engineering detail design and for leading the EPC and commissioning works of the plant. The technology developed by SENER includes state-of-the-art solutions such as the molten salt storage system and the receiver, which is able to absorb 95% of the radiation from the sun’s spectrum and transmit this energy to the molten salt compound that circulates within the receiver, which is then used to heat steam and operate the steam turbines.