Just in time for the opening of Schott Solar’s new Albuquerque plant, where it plans on producing utility-scale concentrating solar power systems, here is a video that demonstrates the scale and operations of one such utility-sized system. This features Nevada Solar One, a 64 MW CSP project that went online in 2007. I don’t know if it is living up to its billing, but NSO is supposed to be producing more than 130,000 million KWh each year.
According to SolarPaces, NSO is the largest solar energy project to be built in the United States since 1991 and is is composed of 357,000 m2 of second-generation parabolic trough collectors (SGX2) developed by Solargenix Energy with the collaboration of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
Schott actually produced 70 percent of the absorber tubes (made in one of their German plants), so this video probably gives a fairly accurate display of some the CSP materials it will initially be making in New Mexico. The other 30 percent of the tubes were made by Solel in Israel. The reflectors were produced by Flabeg in Germany. The heat exchange fluid is connected to a 70‑MW reheat steam turbine produced by Siemens in Sweden. NSO is also designed to have 30 minutes of thermal storage.
Warning: the video’s audio track may irritate non techno-music fans.