Marking its way for the construction of solar thermal power plant at the beginning of the new year, SolarReserve’s 150 MW plant has been granted an approval by the government from South Australia. This solar energy project is called the Aurora solar energy project and is located in Adelaide which is the capital of South Australia 300 km North in Port Augusta. The Aurora solar energy project is anticipated to incorporate 1100 MWh or 8 hours of storage, thus allowing it to function like a traditional gas power station or gold power station. This project is biggest of its kind in the world costing AU$650 mn with the capacity of 135 MW under normal conditions with an extended ability to increase the output when the conditions are favourable.
The Aurora solar energy project is expected to deliver 495 GWh of power every year. It is anticipated to provide dispatchable baseload electricity to networks. From the year 2020, it is estimated that hundred percent of the total South Australian Government’s electricity load will be supplied from the Aurora plant. Also this project will supply electricity to other markets thereby increasing competition and pressurizing the need to reduce prices of power.
This project is anticipated to make use of thousands of mirrors for the reflection and concentration of sunlight on to a receiver which would be present on top of the tower. This process will heat molten salt which will be pumped to the top of the tower and flow through the receiver at extremely high degree temperature. This molten salt will provide a heat source which is stored and can be used for the generation of steam which will drive turbines that can generate electricity. This can generate power at full load for 8 hours even after sunset.