A solar park in Dubai will be 80 square miles in size when completed, with thousands of solar PV panels and the biggest Concentrated Solar Power tower ever. Output will be a serious 5 GW, which will make it one of the biggest power plants on the planets, with only a few nukes bigger. It will also be the biggest single-site solar park in the world.
Dubai is studying ways to cut dust build up on solar panels, because dust decreases efficiency, as well as using a dry robotic system to clean the panels quickly.
CSP uses mirrors to reflect the heat of the sun towards a central tower to power steam turbines. It also stores excess heat in molten salt so power can be generated at night too. The steam generally is allowed to turn back into water so it can be reused.
Dubai plans to have 75% renewable energy by 2050 and 25% by 2030.
“Typically, CSP will have efficiencies which are slightly higher than photovoltaics (PVs),” Christos Markides, professor of clean energy technologies at Imperial College London, told CNN. CSP stores energy as heat rather than in batteries. “Thermal energy storage is something like 10-times cheaper than electrical energy storage,” he explained. “That gives that particular technology an advantage.”
CSP can continue to create electricity even without the sun and well into the night. Dubai’s tower can store heat for 15 hours and will be able to provide power 24 hours a day