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Issue 6, 2014
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The prospect of high temperature solid state energy conversion to reduce the cost of concentrated solar power

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Abstract

The primary challenges in making renewable energy competitive with fossil fuels for utility scale electricity are to reduce the levelized cost and enable dispatchable power delivery. In this respect concentrated solar power (CSP) with thermal storage could play an important role, since the cost of thermal storage is lower than that of electrochemical batteries. CSP, however, is still expensive and a number of ongoing research efforts are targeted at reducing the cost via a number of technological development pathways. Here, we present a simplified cost model for CSP and show that increasing the temperature of the heat delivered to the power cycle is a potential pathway to reduce the cost. We also propose that solid state energy converters, possibly in combination with traditional turbines, provide additional advantages that can enable high temperature CSP systems with a lower levelized cost of electricity.

Graphical abstract: The prospect of high temperature solid state energy conversion to reduce the cost of concentrated solar power

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Publication details

The article was received on 23 Jan 2014, accepted on 07 Apr 2014 and first published on 07 Apr 2014


Article type: Analysis
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE00288A
Citation: Energy Environ. Sci., 2014,7, 1819-1828
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    The prospect of high temperature solid state energy conversion to reduce the cost of concentrated solar power

    A. Henry and R. Prasher, Energy Environ. Sci., 2014, 7, 1819
    DOI: 10.1039/C4EE00288A

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