Abengoa has commissioned its latest concentrating solar power (CSP) project, the Castilla-La Mancha Solar Complex in Spain. Comprised of two identical 50-megawatt (MW) parabolic trough plants, which reflect and focus the sun’s rays on receiver tubes filled with heat transfer fluids that are heated to approximately 400 degrees Celsius (ºC) (752ºF). The fluid circulates through heat exchangers and produces steam, which is then used to drive a conventional steam turbine.
The Castilla-La Mancha Solar Complex will do its part in reducing greenhouse gas emissions — Abengoa estimates some 63,000 tons of CO2 per year will not be released into the atmosphere as a result of the new power plant. The project has also had significant socioeconomic benefits in the community.
Solar Jobs, Clean Power on the Spanish Plain
At its peak, 1,650 construction jobs were created, along with 90 permanent, full-time operation and maintenance positions. Adding to the local economic boost, locally manufactured components were used in building the CSP plant, according to Abengoa’s press release.
Local and state government leaders joined Abengoa senior executives in commissioning Castilla-La Mancha.
Abengoa is also building a CSP plant some 70 miles southwest of Phoenix. Now over 80% complete, the 280-MW Solana CSP plant is being equipped with a molten salt thermal storage system, which will enable stored power to be distributed on demand, even when the sun’s not shining.