Friday, June 09, 2006

Portugal to Build World's Largest Sunfarm

This photo is of the Kramer Junction Solar Electric Generating Station in San Bernadino, California. Portugal is now planning a solar plant that will be even larger.
Construction work has begun in southern Portugal on what is set to be the world's largest solar power station.

The 58m euro (£40m) plant near Serpa, 200km (125 miles) south of Lisbon, will produce enough electricity for 8,000 homes when it starts next January.

The 11-megawatt solar power plant, to be made up of 52,000 photovoltaic modules, will cover a 60-hectare (150-acre) southern-facing hillside.|BBC|
Kudos to them. Solar power may not be the entire answer to replacing fossil fuels, but solar power is a step in the right direction. It's clean, reliable, and available. It makes so much sense in areas like the Southwestern US where they have lots of sunlight and a lot of empty space. Western Kansas would be another great location for solar arrays.

Previously, I blogged
about a new technology that harnesses ultraviolet light for solar power as well.

Business Week predicts that this ultraviolet solar technology is at least 10 years off, but that it will be a disruptive technology when it hits the market.
The work is far from done, of course. Sargent's still-unnamed material will have to be improved before it's used in commercial products. So far, it can convert only a very small amount of infrared light into energy -- about 1,000 times less than what's needed for commercial use....

It will probably take Sargent and the industry up to 10 years to get this technology to become a significant commercial product. But many venture capitalists and solar-cell companies believe it's worth the wait. "I view this work to be groundbreaking," says Josh Wolfe, managing partner at New York-based venture-capital firm Lux Partners. "There's an opportunity for a disruptive breakthrough technology with major social implications."

Indeed, with its potential to be used in power-generating garments, the day may not be that far off when the term "power suit" takes on a whole new meaning. |Business Week|

1 comment:

John said...,2782,69528,00.html#

Two articles about solar power using Stirling engines. An alternative to photovolteic cells and kinda cooler if you ask me. According to the second site, Western Kansas has acceptable but far from ideal amounts of sunlight.