SkyFuel launches new R&D concentrated solar energy program

The new collector will be designed to operate at higher temperatures, making thermal storage even more cost effective for electricity production after the sun sets, to satisfy the baseload needs of utilities. The $4.3 Million research effort is jointly funded by SkyFuel and the US Department of Energy (DOE), with the shared goal to improve Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) technology and accelerate market-readiness.

The advanced baseload trough builds on the features of the SkyTrough, and leverages parallel DOE-supported efforts in heat transfer fluid and storage media. As with the SkyTrough, ReflecTech Mirror Film will be used in place of heavy glass mirrors.

ReflecTech mirror panels are even more accurate than glass mirrors, making large reflectors possible. All of these advances serve to lower the installed cost of solar fields and accelerate the expansion of clean solar power into the market.

SkyFuel’s Chief Technology Officer, Randy Gee, noted that "this ambitious new R&D program has prompted us to further augment our technical team and invest in new equipment for our Development Test Center."