Worldwide Solar Power

Increasing the efficiency of solar power, lighting thousands of homes easily

In February, 2008, a Hong Kong based company announced that it will help fund the world's largest solar plant. It should be completed in 2013 in Victoria, Australia. It will be capable of generating 145MW of electricity. Enough power for 45,000 homes. BUT they are not using solar thermal. They are using a method called concentrated photovoltaic. It is a lot like solar thermal, because it uses mirrors to concentrate the light, but instead of heating a liquid to generate steam, it will focus the mirrors on a giant PV panel, which will, in turn, generate electricity. The company says that the PV panels will triple the efficiency of silicon. It is interesting that they want to create this much heat, but by creating all that heat, they have to cool the panels to keep them down to 60* C.

Let's not discount Solar thermal. Vying for the world's largest power plant will be the Mojave Solar Park, which is a 554MW plant in the Mojave Desert in California and will provide power to 400,000 homes.

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