Reduced CSP water consumption on the horizon

11 July 2016

Under the co-ordination of Kelvion of Germany (formerly GEA Heat Exchanger Systems), a total of twelve partners are taking part in a project called MinWaterCSP (minimised water consumption in concentrated solar power plants) to develop ways of reducing water consumption in CSP plants and increase their cost-effectiveness.

European, Moroccan, and South African partners – including ENEXIO of Germany (formerly GEA power cooling business) and Kelvion Thermal Solutions of South Africa – are taking part in this research and demonstration project. This venture began in January of 2016 and is being supported by the European Union within the context of the Horizon 2020 programme.

The goals of this consortium include reduction by 75 to 95% of evaporation in CSP plants, compared to wet cooling systems. Cleaning of the mirrors also offers potential cost savings. As a result, several approaches are being pursued in parallel: implementation of a hybrid cooling system (dry–wet); development of new heat exchanger components and innovative and more efficient axial fans; development of optimised mirror-cleaning systems; and improved water management for the entire facility.

Technologies will be developed during the coming three years and tested at three locations, in southern Spain, Morocco, and South Africa.

The purpose of the MinWaterCSP project is to increase the competitiveness of concentrated solar power plants and to help make the technology more attractive for investors.

The MinWaterCSP project partners, in addition to Kelvion, are: ECILIMP Thermosolar SL (Spain); ENEXIO Germany GmbH (Germany); Fraunhofer ISE (Germany); Institut de Recherches en Energie Solaire et Energy Nouvelles – IRESEN (Morocco); Kelvion Thermal Solutions Pty Ltd (South Africa); Laterizi Gambettola SRL – SOLTIGUA (Italy); Notus Fan Engineering (South Africa); Stellenbosch University (South Africa); the Steinbeis- Europa-Zentrum of Steinbeis Innovation gGmbH (Germany); Universita Degli Studi di Roma la Sapienza (Italy); Waterleau Group NV (Belgium). 

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