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Solar thermal

Long Lasting Solar Thermal Material Absorbs 90% of Light

Written by , on November 7, 2014

A new nanoparticle-based material for concentrating solar power plants can absorb and convert to heat more than 90% of the sunlight falling on it, withstand temperatures of more than 700ºC and survive for many years.  Read more »

New Material Converts Solar Energy to Steam

Written by , on September 10, 2014

A new material structure, developed at MIT, generates steam when simply floated on water and placed in the sun.   Read more »

IBM Cooling Tech to Cut Cost of Solar Power

Written by , on April 24, 2013

Scientists at Airlight Energy have joined IBM and the Swiss universities, ETH Zurich and Interstate University of Applied Sciences, to develop an affordable photovoltaic system that is capable of concentrating sunlight 2,000 times onto hundreds of one centimetre square PC cells – yielding high efficiency at low cost. The system uses a large parabolic dish […]  Read more »

Using Whirlwinds to Drive Wind Turbines

Written by , on March 21, 2013

Mark Simpson and Ari Glezer at Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta have developed a new way of driving a wind turbine using the vortex effect which produces whirlwinds and tornados. When there is a temperature difference between hot air close to the ground and cooler air just above it, the hot air rises and […]  Read more »

Solar Powered Internal Combustion Engine

Written by , on November 23, 2012

Missouri inventors Matt Bellue and Ben Cooper have developed way of converting an internal combustion engine to be powered by solar energy. The solar energy is used to heat oil which is injected into the cylinder with a little water. The water boils and the steam drives the cylinder. The oil and water are collected […]  Read more »

Low-cost Thermal Energy Storage in Concrete

Written by , on November 10, 2012

Engineeris researchers at the University of Arkansas have developed a thermal energy storage system that could dramatically increase annual energy production while significantly decreasing production costs of a concentrated solar power. Current storage methods use molten salts, oils or beds of packed rock to store heat inside thermal energy storage tanks. Although these methods do […]  Read more »

Open Source to Cut Power Generation Costs

Written by , on August 10, 2012

Zenman Energy, a non-profit company located in Virginia, is aiming to drastically reduce the installed cost per watt of  solar thermal power by developing a low-cost solar steam engine generator and giving away detailed construction plans after the prototype is complete .They hope that this open source model will lead to further improvements in the […]  Read more »

Lotus-shaped Solar Generator

Written by , on June 20, 2012

Monarch Power, a private research and development company in Arizona, is developing a lotus-shaped solar collector that is expected to produce up to 3 kilowatts of solar thermal power, as as well as steam for heating. The company also expects that the solar concentrator could be used to produce up to 3 kilowatts of solar […]  Read more »

“Smart Mirrors” Lower Concentrated Solar Costs

Written by , on April 18, 2012

A Californian company,Thermata, has developed a high-tech mirror which it says can cut the cost of sun-tracking mirrors, or heliostats, in half. The system uses small heliostats, each with a camera to detect the angle of the sun and the heliostat, together with a mesh network of microprocessors to position each mirror with the ideal […]  Read more »

Thermal Batteries Could Store the Sun’s Heat

Written by , on July 14, 2011

MIT researchers have found a compound, made from abundant and inexpensive materials, which can store and release solar thermal energy in a chemical form without degrading. The material could be used to make rechargeable thermal batteries which could store the energy for long periods without loss. Thermo-chemical storage of solar energy uses a molecule whose […]  Read more »