Doesn’t that just sound like the biggest nerd pr0n video of all time?!
I just saw an article over at ThinkProgress.org about a solar power plant in Spain that is using reflected solar thermal power to heat salts that stay molten for a long time, and then using that heat during the evening hours to maintain a constant stream of collected energy to electricity for customer demand. Â The idea of using hundreds of heliostats to focus daytime sun onto essentially a bucket of something to collect solar energy is not new, we’ve been doing it for a long time. Â It’s always interesting, however, exactly what stories get peoples’ attention. Â I’m always grateful whenever cool tech makes regular news.
PS, a heliostat is the combination of a very, very specular mirror of the planar variety (usually) that is attached to something that makes it continually point so that it is focusing its reflected beam of light onto a target. Â When you put several hundred of these things together in a field shining at something like they use in solar thermal collection, you get beams of light that create some of the most intense melting heat we know on Earth. Â Like this:
Here’s the video from CNN:
Thanks for the image, Wikipedia!