The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE: DOW) has achieved record supply volumes of DOWTHERM™ A for solar power applications in 2010. To date, Dow has filled fourteen large Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) plants in Spain and the United States, with a total capacity of more than 700 MW.
These plants will provide power for the equivalent of approximately 415,000 homes and save 1.6 million metric tons of CO2 emissions per year. The United States is set to gain global prominence in the CSP market, with the California Energy Commission alone approving 1.75 GW of CSP plants that use parabolic trough technology. As a market leader in CSP grade heat transfer fluids, Dow is prepared to offer complete customer service to support this market growth, including innovation, engineering expertise, reliable supply chain and delivery of high quality, high volume products to remote locations.
How CSP Works
CSP uses parabolic mirrors to reflect and magnify heat from the sun onto a closed circulating loop containing DOWTHERM™ A heat transfer fluid. The fluid collects the heat energy and transports it to a power station where it is used to produce steam, which drives turbines that generate electricity. DOWTHERM™ A is a specialized heat transfer fluid capable of accommodating temperatures up to 400 degrees Celsius.
Solar power technology like CSP offers many advantages in regions that require reliable new sources of energy. The technology helps to diversify energy supply, is capable of producing power during periods of peak demand, and reduces dependence of fossil fuels. When used instead of fossil fuel generation plants, CSP facilities offer improved air quality and can help many nations meet off-set goals for carbon emissions produced by existing fossil fuel power plants.