In terms of global concentrating solar power market in the year of 2019, a total capacity of 381.6MW solar thermal projects were newly built up across the world, making an increase rate of 6.29%. Specifically, China successfully completed four new CSP projects with capacity of 200MW, 52.1% of the global total.
This solar resource map provides a summary of the estimated solar energy available for power generation and other energy applications. It represents the average daily/yearly sum of direct normal radiation (DNI) covering the period from 1994/1999/2007 (depending on the geographical region) to 2015. The underlying solar resource database is calculated by the Solargis model from atmospheric and satellite data with 15-minute and 30-minute time step respectively, and a spatial resolution of 1 km.
Concentrated solar power (CSP, also known as concentrating solar power, concentrated solar thermal) generate solar power by using mirrors or lenses to concentrate a large area of sunlight onto a receiver.
Electricity is generated when the concentrated light is converted to heat (solar thermal energy), which drives a heat engine (usually a steam turbine) connected to an electrical power generator or powers a thermochemical reaction.
Concentrated solar power had a global total installed capacity of 6,451 MW in 2019, up from 382 MW in 2018. Spain accounted for almost half of the world’s capacity, at 2,300 MW, despite no new capacity entering commercial operation in the country since 2013.
The United States follows with 1,740 MW. Interest is also notable in North Africa and the Middle East, as well as India and China. The global market was initially dominated by parabolic-trough plants, which accounted for 90% of CSP plants. Since about 2010, central power tower CSP has been favored in new plants due to its higher temperature operation (up to 565 C) than trough (up to 400 C), which promises greater efficiency.
Among the larger CSP projects are the Ivanpah Solar Power Facility (392 MW) in the United States which uses solar power tower technology without thermal energy storage. In the MENA region, the Ouarzazate Solar Power Station came online in Morocco in 2017.
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