Solana Generating Station
|Solana Generating Station Project|
Assembly of the parabolic mirrors
|Construction began||December 2010|
|Construction cost||US$2 billion|
Liberty Interactive Corporation
|Operator(s)||Arizona Solar One LLC|
|CSP technology||Parabolic trough|
|Total collector area||2,233,958 square metres (552.023 acres)|
|Site area||1,920 acres (780 ha)|
|Make and model||Siemens|
|Nameplate capacity||280 MW|
|Storage capacity||6 hours|
|Planned output||944 GW·h|
The Solana Generating Station is a solar power plant near Gila Bend, Arizona, about 70 miles (110 km) southwest of Phoenix, completed in 2013. When commissioned it was the largest parabolic trough plant in the world and the first U.S. solar plant with molten salt thermal energy storage. Built by the Spanish company Abengoa Solar, it has a total capacity of 280 megawatts (MW) gross, from two 140 MW gross (125 MW net) steam turbine generators, which is enough to power 70,000 homes while avoiding around 475,000 tons of CO2 every year. Its name is the Spanish term for "sunny spot".
The plant employs a proprietary concentrating solar power (CSP) trough technology developed by Abengoa, and covers an area of 1,920 acres (780 ha). Construction was expected to create about 1,500 construction jobs with the plant employing 85 full-time workers. Solar thermal plants use substantially more water for cooling than other solar generating technologies. Nevertheless, the Sierra Club supports the Solana plant, because it will be built on private land, and use "75 to 85 percent less water than the current agricultural use."
Arizona Public Service (APS) has contracted to purchase 100% of the power output generated from Solana, to meet the Arizona Corporation Commission's (ACC) mandate that the state's regulated utilities provide 15% of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2025. APS will pay about 14 cents per kWh. The Solana plant was originally planned to open in 2011 and was estimated to cost $2 billion. In December 2010, Abengoa received a $1.45 billion loan guarantee to support construction of the plant.
One of the principal advantages of concentrated solar thermal (CST) is that thermal energy storage can be provided efficiently, so that output can be provided after the sun goes down, and output can be scheduled to meet demand requirements. The Solana Generating Station is designed to provide six hours of energy storage. This allows the plant to generate about 38 percent of its rated capacity over the course of a year.
Solana Generating Station's production is as follows.
Projected full production is 944,000 MW·h (994 GW·h). At the end of the second full year of operation, the Solana Generating Station is still operating 25 percent below the projected full production value.
- Energy storage
- List of energy storage projects
- Solar power in Arizona
- SEGS, nine solar power plants in California's Mojave Desert.
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- Gelt, Joe (2008). "Clean, Green Solar Power Falls Short in Achieving Water Efficiency". Arizona Water Resource (Arizona Water Resource, vol. 17, no. 1, 16pp., Water Resources Research Center, Tucson, AZ, Autumn 2008). University of Arizona, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. Retrieved 2008-12-04.
- Randazzo, Ryan (February 21, 2008). "Plant to brighten state's solar future". The Arizona Republic. Retrieved 2009-06-08.
- Randazzo, Ryan (July 3, 2010). "Arizona solar plant gets big boost from feds". The Arizona Republic. Retrieved 2010-07-03.
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- Innovation in Concentrating Thermal Solar Power (CSP), RenewableEnergyFocus.com website.
- Solana: 10 Facts You Didn't Know About the Concentrated Solar Power Plant Near Gila Bend
- "Solana Generating Station, Monthly". Electricity Data Browser. Energy Information Administration. Retrieved February 4, 2017.
- "Solana Generating Station". Concentrating Solar Power Projects. National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). February 23, 2013. Retrieved 2013-07-22.
- Wald, Matthew L. Arizona Utility Tries Storing Solar Energy for Use in the Dark, The New York Times, October 18, 2013, p. B1 (New York edition); also published online at NYTimes.com on October 17, 2013. Retrieved October 18, 2013. Discusses BrightSource Energy, Electric Power Research Institute, Ivanpah Solar Power Facility project, and the Solana Generating Station project.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Solana Generating Station.|
- "Solana Generating Station Project". Abengoa Solar Inc. Retrieved 2008-12-04.
- "APS :: Solana - Arizona's Largest Solar Power Plant". Arizona Public Service (APS). Retrieved 2008-12-04.
- Arizona Utility to Buy Power from a 280-Megawatt Solar Power Plant