CSP large scale implementation: barriers and perspectives


CSP systems can supply solar power on-demand through the use of thermal storage, helping to address grid integration challenges related to the variability of solar energy and enabling solar-generated heat to be stored until electricity is needed, even after the sun sets. Reflecting this increased value of dispatchable solar, the 2030 target for CSP

Concentrating solar power systems can be sized for village power (10 kilowatts) or grid-connected applications (up to 100 megawatts). Some systems use thermal storage during cloudy periods or at night. Others can be combined with natural gas and the resulting hybrid power plants provide high-value, dispatchable power. These attributes, along with world record solar-to-electric conversion efficiencies, make concentrating solar power an attractive renewable energy option in the sunbelt regions worldwide. There are four CSP technologies being promoted internationally. For each of these, there exists various design variations or different configurations.  The amount of power generated by a concentrating solar power plant depends on the amount of direct sunlight.

GCC economies’ position in global energy markets over the past 40 years has been shaped by their role as oil and gas producers. Rapid socio-econom-ic growth over the past decade is positioning them as one of the world’s highest growth markets. During the 2000s, regional energy consumption grew at an average of 5% per annum, faster than India, China and Brazil. Notably, with rising domestic demand, some countries are turning to imports. The UAE, for instance, is turning to gas imports due to the surge in demand, lag times for domestic production, and export obligations through established long-term contracts.

The abundance of solar resource potential and the falling cost of associated technologies, are major factors influencing the attractiveness of solar energy in the region. The GCC countries lie in the so-called Global Sunbelt2 and boast some of the highest solar irradiances in the world and it’s the ideal region doe csp apllications.

A techno economic study to identify the perspective for CSP development, as well as the barriers, that may create bottlenecks.


Publications List

Solar energy in the GCC: Untapped potential (Helioscsp)

Solar Energy Potentials and Benefits in the Gulf Cooperation Council

Renewable Energy Market Analysis: The GCC Region (IRENA)