An evaluation of possible next-generation high temperature molten-salt power towers.

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Since completion of the Solar Two molten-salt power tower demonstration in 1999, the solar industry has been developing initial commercial-scale projects that are 3 to 14 times larger. Like Solar Two, these initial plants will power subcritical steam-Rankine cycles using molten salt with a temperature of 565 C. The main question explored in this study is whether there is significant economic benefit to develop future molten-salt plants that operate at a higher receiver outlet temperature. Higher temperatures would allow the use of supercritical steam cycles that achieve an improved efficiency relative to today's subcritical cycle ({approx}50% versus {approx}42%). The levelized ... continued below

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121 p.

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Kolb, Gregory J. December 1, 2011.

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Description

Since completion of the Solar Two molten-salt power tower demonstration in 1999, the solar industry has been developing initial commercial-scale projects that are 3 to 14 times larger. Like Solar Two, these initial plants will power subcritical steam-Rankine cycles using molten salt with a temperature of 565 C. The main question explored in this study is whether there is significant economic benefit to develop future molten-salt plants that operate at a higher receiver outlet temperature. Higher temperatures would allow the use of supercritical steam cycles that achieve an improved efficiency relative to today's subcritical cycle ({approx}50% versus {approx}42%). The levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) of a 565 C subcritical baseline plant was compared with possible future-generation plants that operate at 600 or 650 C. The analysis suggests that {approx}8% reduction in LCOE can be expected by raising salt temperature to 650 C. However, most of that benefit can be achieved by raising the temperature to only 600 C. Several other important insights regarding possible next-generation power towers were also drawn: (1) the evaluation of receiver-tube materials that are capable of higher fluxes and temperatures, (2) suggested plant reliability improvements based on a detailed evaluation of the Solar Two experience, and (3) a thorough evaluation of analysis uncertainties.

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121 p.

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  • Report No.: SAND2011-9320
  • Grant Number: AC04-94AL85000
  • DOI: 10.2172/1035342 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 1035342
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc829989

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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  • December 1, 2011

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • May 19, 2016, 3:16 p.m.

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  • Dec. 5, 2016, 3:23 p.m.

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Kolb, Gregory J. An evaluation of possible next-generation high temperature molten-salt power towers., report, December 1, 2011; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc829989/: accessed November 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.