1. The Sun's Energy
The sun's energy is powerful, but has fairly low density. The amount of energy captured by a small surface may be sufficient to heat the water in a domestic water heater, for example, but to obtain suitable temperatures for industrial use, solar radiation must be concentrated.
With concentrated solar power (CSP) technology, it is possible to obtain adequate temperatures for industrial processes that require steam, very hot water, or intense heat
Rackam develops parabolic trough collectors under the brand name Icarus Heat. Installed in rows, these collectors increase the intensity of the sun's rays by concentrating them on a central tube filled with a circulating heat transfer fluid (e.g. oil), which absorbs the thermal energy.
The collector consists of an ultra-high-efficiency parabolic mirror and a vacuum tube that receives the concentrated solar energy. The mirror and tube assembly is mounted on a pivoting structure equipped with an automated sun-tracking mechanism.
3. HEAT STORAGE
The heat captured by the collectors (1)) is transported, at high temperature, through a piping system filled with a heat transfer fluid to a thermal battery (2) or directly to the process (3).
The thermal battery makes it possible to store heat and use it later on, during periods of greater demand or when the sun is not shining.
4. Heat Use
Heat is used in many different industrial processes. Captured by the collectors, it is available at 220°C when it is transported directly to the processes, and at 165°C when it has been stored. At those temperatures, its industrial uses can range from steam production to air conditioning and refrigeration.