Paper presented to the 3rd Southern African Solar Energy Conference, South Africa, 11-13 May, 2015.
Existing tower type solar power plants consist of a sunbeam collecting system of a solar power tower with heliostats, a molten salt heat transfer and heat storage system, and a steam turbine power generation system. In a new system, the molten salt is replaced by aluminum. The steam turbine is replaced by a supercritical CO2 gas turbine, which can achieve 48% cycle thermal efficiency with turbine inlet temperature of 650°C. In addition, the concentrating power tower is replaced by a beam-down solar system to reduce the radiation loss at the receiver. The aluminum receiver structure and dimensions are shown based on the simplified heat transfer analyses. For the 100 MWt receiver inlet energy, the available power becomes 40.1 MWe at daytime and 8.1 MWe at night.