Parabolic troughs are a type of concentrated solar power that uses shaped mirrors which follow the sun during the day and heat up a liquid which then heats water to make steam in order to move conventional turbines.
Parabolic dishes are like large satellite dishes with curved mirrors that reflect sunlight to a central point where the energy heats to 750 C. A liquid also heats up and drives a piston to generate electricity.
Central receivers use an array of mirrors in a tower to heat up a liquid to 650 C. Steam is produced to drive a turbine. Linear fresnel reflectors use long rows of reflectors to heat a liquid or to directly make steam. They don’t generate as much energy but could cost less in production and long-term maintenance. To reduce energy consumption hot waters could be used. For example, over 80% of homes in Israel have solar water heaters, according to the report.
Also cited is the job growth potential should Texas become a world leader in solar technology. An institute at the University of Texas at Austin found that 123,000 jobs could be created in the long-term in manufacturing and solar electrical services.
Texas is already a leader in wind power. Coupled with its’ colosal solar potential, the state is poised to become a true force of nature in the clean energy arena, nationally and perhaps globally.
Image Credit: Public Domain
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