Electricity Generation from Solar Energy
Our country is fortunate compared to many countries in terms of its solar energy potential due to its geographical location, it is located in the solar belt and has an important potential in this regard. Energy and Natural Resources Ministry Renewable Energy Directorate General made clear that the Solar Energy Potential Atlas study results in Turkey at 56,000 MW thermal power plant capacity equivalent to solar energy capacity is located, and that if the exploitation of the potential annual average of 380 billion kWh of electricity was determined that production possibilities make.
Renewable Energy The average annual sunshine duration of Turkey, according to a study conducted by the General Directorate 2640 hours (daily total of 7.2 hours), average total solar radiation is 1311 kWh / m²-year (daily total of 3.6 kWh / m²) was determined to be.
Semiconductor materials called photovoltaic cells generate electricity when exposed to sunlight. Systems that generate electricity with panels made of these materials are called Solar Power Plants / SPPs.
Concentrated Solar Energy (CSP)
Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) technologies, using mirrors, reflect sunlight spread over a large area, collect it in a small area and convert it into heat (thermal energy). This thermal energy is also used to generate electricity.
Different CSP systems have been developed according to the methods of concentrating solar energy.
Parabolic trough reflectors
These are systems in which parabolic (groove shaped) reflectors are used. The sunlight is collected by the receiver, a tube that runs in the direction of the focal point of the trough and is a fluid circulation tube. The reflector tracks the sun throughout the day with its tracking mechanisms. Parabolic trough systems are the most advanced among CSP technologies.
Compact linear fresnel reflectors
In this system, which is structurally similar to trough reflector systems, sunlight is reflected to a pair of tubes in which liquid is circulated using many thin and long mirrors. This system is less costly because flat mirrors are cheaper than parabolic mirrors, and more daylight can be collected by placing more reflectors in an area of the same size compared to the parabolic trough system. Compact linear fresnel reflectors are mostly used in large capacity and advanced power plants.
Dish reflectors (Stirling engine system)
In the system consisting of a large number of small flat mirrors placed in a single bowl-shaped parabolic reflector or parabolic bowl shape, the reflectors have a liquid-containing receiver at the focal point, similar to other systems. The reflector follows the sun in two axes. Unlike other systems, it is used for energy generation in the stirling engine instead of producing heated liquid steam. This system provides the highest efficiency in the conversion of solar energy to electrical energy among other CSP technologies.
It consists of a central receiver located on a tower and a number of flat reflectors (heliostats) that reflect the sun’s rays to this receiver. Computer controlled reflectors follow the sun in two axes. In this system, it is possible to reach much higher temperatures than others; this means more energy. It is used to generate electricity through the heated liquid steam. Although energy towers are less developed than the parabolic trough system, they offer a higher efficiency and better capacity in energy storage.