Your browser may block some cookies by default. By clicking, you agree to allow our advertising partners to place their cookies and serve you more relevant ads. Visit our privacy policy page to view our privacy policy or opt-out.
sydney-opera-house-harbor-city-sunset-161878-1502982279289-1502982281752.jpeg
Source: Pixabay/Pexels

Australia Aims For World's Biggest Solar Thermal Energy Source

By Brian Spaen

South Australia is continuing to dive into the renewable energy market in a serious way. After announcing that a new battery facility will be backing up a wind farm in the state by the end of the year, they are going to add 150 megawatts of capacity in the form of a solar thermal power plant. This is no small feat. In fact, it would be the biggest of its kind in the world when completed.

The new Aurora solar power plant would be located in Port Augusta in South Australia. They’re hoping to break ground next year with a completion year set for 2020. According to Science Alert, the new power plant will generate “650 construction jobs for local workers” and “provide all the electricity needs for the state government.” It will be developed with a $110 million loan from the government with 25 MW used for other purposes.

Interestingly, solar thermal power plants operate a bit differently than solar photovoltaic, or solar electric. These methods collect and concentrate sunlight to produce a high temperature that creates electricity. Basically, this is done by using mirrors that reflect the sunlight on a receiver. Many benefits of this process exist, such as operating when the sun is down because of stored energy, and it’s much more efficient than its PV counterpart.