ASE and Chiyoda commission new parabolic trough test loop with molten salt as HTF
Italy's Archimede Solar Energy and Japan's Chiyoda have successfully commissioned their new parabolic trough test loop with molten salt as heat transfer fluid (HTF) and thermal energy storage system.
This facility, located in Massa Martana in the Peruggia region of Italy, comprises a 600 meter long parabolic trough loop and a two-tanks-direct molten salt storage system with up to five hours of thermal energy storage.
This configuration is not used in commercial plants, but only in a demonstration plant in Sicily, the Archimede ISCC. As mentioned above, the plant uses molten salt as HTF which flows from the cold tank through the loop pipes where heat is collected to the hot tank where it's stored at roughly 550 degrees Celsius.
Currently, parabolic trough plants using synthetic oil as HTF cannot reach temperatures above 400º, the consortium claims "the aim of the project led by Archimede Solar Energy with the Engineering of Chiyoda Corporation is to enhance the economy and reliability of parabolic-trough power plants".
"The steam at a higher temperature thus produced will enable more efficient operation of the steam turbine for power generation", companies said, "the TES tanks using molten salts only can be significant smaller compared to oil plus molten salts", they added.
The potential offered by the salt is to be investigated at the test facility equipped with receiver tubes made by Archimede Solar Energy (ASE). The partner companies include TECHINT, SQM, BFR MECCANICA, AXEL, RDM, REFLEX, CEU and MECCANOTECNICA UMBRA.