Gemasolar is the first commercial-scale plant in the world to apply central tower receiver and molten salt heat storage technology. The relevance of this plant lies in its technological uniqueness, since it opens up the way for new thermosolar electrical generation technology.
Characteristics of Gemasolar:
The prolongation of the plant's operating time in the absence of solar radiation and the improvement in
efficiency of the use of the heat from the sun makes Gemasolar's output much higher than that which is delivered by other technologies in a facility with the same power.
The notable increase in the plant's power efficiency guarantees electrical production for 6,500 hours a year, 1.5 to 3 times more than other renewable energies. The plant will thus supply clean, safe power to 25,000 homes and reduce atmospheric CO2 emissions by more than 30,000 tons a year.
The power generated by Gemasolar will be sent through a high-tension line to the substation of Villanueva del Rey (Andalusia, Spain), where it will be injected into the grid.
The inclusion of a novel molten-salt heat storage system permits the production of electricity in the absence of solar radiation.
The heat collected by the salts (capable of reaching temperatures above 500o) generates steam and produces electrical power. The surplus heat accumulated during sun hours is stored in the molten-salt tank.
In this way, Gemasolar can produce electrical power 24 hours a day for many months of the year.