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Renewable Energy

Renewable Energy

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Published by: pcsamy on Sep 29, 2010
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07/11/2014

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In addition to providing process heat or generating electricity, concentrating solar
thermal energy can also be used for testing materials or in solar - chemical systems.
For instance, there is a large solar furnace in the French town of Odeillo where a
large number of small mirrors are mounted on a hillside. These mirrors reflect the
sunlight to a convex mirror 54 m in diameter, creating temperatures of 4000 ° C in
the solar furnace, which is used for research and industrial processes. Solar furnaces
have also been built in Almer í a, Spain, and Cologne, Germany.

7 Solar Power Plants – Even More Energy from the Sun

156

In addition to producing chemicals at high temperatures, solar thermal energy can
also be used to produce hydrogen. This does not require a circuitous route that starts
with generating electricity, followed by electrolysis. At high temperatures hydrogen
can be produced through a solar - chemical process. For example, the chemical
system could be in the receiver of a solar tower. Hydrogen is treated as an important
energy source, particularly in the transportation sector and in fuel cells. If a hydro-
gen economy ever becomes a reality, concentrating solar - chemical systems could
play a major role in hydrogen production.

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