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Impact of solar thermal power plants on water resources and electricity costs in the Southwest

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2 Author(s)
Keith E. Holbert ; School of Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287 USA ; Colin J. Haverkamp

Interest in electricity generation using renewable energy, and solar power in particular, has increased considerably in recent years. Solar resources in the southwestern U.S. are the best in the country. Plans for a significant number of solar thermal generating stations using parabolic concentrators or central receivers are presently underway. Concentrating solar power (CSP) plants require condenser cooling, which typically is provided using water resources that are scarce in arid regions such as the Southwest. To ensure sustainability of solar-electric facilities in the Southwest, requirements for CSP units to utilize dry cooling may be prudent.

Published in:

North American Power Symposium (NAPS), 2009

Date of Conference:

4-6 Oct. 2009