Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Powerful type of solar power being tested at Sandia National Labs by Brittany Bade

Robometricschool. - This is one information for you about the solar power with the title Powerful type of solar power being tested at Sandia National Labs that written by Brittany Bade and published in KRQE News 13 site.

Image Courtesy of Clean Technica

Engineers at Sandia National Laboratories have developed a first of its kind, 3-D printed technology that makes solar power more powerful.

“What separates Sandia’s research is that we have this one-of-a-kind facility. This is the only ‘power tower’ research facility in the country and there’s only a handful in the world,” said Cliff Ho, a mechanical engineer at Sandia National Labs.

Research and testing at the National Solar Thermal Testing Facility focuses on “concentrating solar power,” which uses a large field of mirrors to generate 20 percent more power than traditional solar power.

“We use lots and lots of mirrors to generate heat and that heat can be stored for use at night or when it’s cloudy, unlike photovoltaics (traditional solar panels) which only produce energy when the sun is shining,” said Ho.

The ability to store energy without the need for expensive batteries is what sets this technology apart from traditional solar power. Ho says in some cases, traditional solar power generates more power than people can use in the middle of the day. Ho says over-generating leads to a waste of electricity.

“If we’re wasting energy, or having to pay people to take it, it’s going to increase the overall price,” said Ho.

Ho says coal is still the cheapest way to produce power. However, in the long run, concentrating solar power will be cheaper than traditional solar power.

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