Abengoa to build 280MW concentrating solar plant in Arizona

February 22, 2008

Energy Blog: Arizona Public Service Co. (APS) announced plans that Abengoa Solar will build the Solana Generating Station, a 280-megawatt (MW) concentrating solar power (CSP) plant, 70 miles southwest of Phoenix, near Gila Bend, Ariz.

Solana will employ technology that can both produce and store energy during the day, and then provide that energy for use by APS customers across periods of peak demand. APS will purchase 100 percent of the plant’s energy output. The plant will employ a proprietary Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) trough technology developed by Abengoa Solar, and will cover a land area of around 1,900 acres. The technology uses parabolic mirrors that track the sun on one axis and focus solar energy on receiver tubes containing a heat transfer fluid. The hot heat transfer fuild is used to convert water into steam, which turns the plant’s turbines to create electricity. The solar plant will also include a thermal energy storage system that allows for electricity to be produced as required, even after the sun has set.

The selection of parabolic trough technology for this plant is evidence that it still the most proven technology and the only technology for which energy storage technology has been demonstrated….