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Concentrating Solar Power project

The Concentrating Solar Power project (Progetto Solare Termodinamico) is funded by the Regional Government of Sardinia in the framework of the operational programme ERDF 2007-2013. The project aims to develop and test new models of energy generation based on the integration of small-scale concentrating solar power plants (P<5MWe) and other renewable energy technologies.

Within the project, three pilot plants will be designed and built with the aim of assessing, in real operating conditions, the effectiveness, reliability and potentiality of small-scale concentrating solar power technologies in the field of distributed generation. The three plants will be equipped with innovative systems for storage of thermal and electrical energy as well as with power blocks based on the Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC). This allows more efficient conversion of thermal energy into electricity in the size range below 5MWe.

All plants have a solar field based on Fresnel technology and use diathermic oil as heat transfer fluid. Each plant has a net collecting area of about 10,000 m2 and conversion power blocks of 600 kWe.
The demo plants will be located in the industrial areas of Ottana, Tortolì and Villacidro with the support of local public authorities and industrial consortia that will also manage the plants after installation. All plants have been designed by a scientific partnership that comprises Sardegna Ricerche, the University of Cagliari (the Department of Mechanical, Chemical and Materials Engineering - DIMCM - and the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering - DIEE), as well as the technical staff of each public authority or consortium involved in the project (Sardinia Water Authority - ENAS, Provincial Industrial Consortia of Ogliastra and Medio Campidano Villacidro).

Sardegna Ricerche coordinates all project activities, provides scientific and technical support to the project partners and carries out both research and testing activities. It is also responsible for the dissemination of the project's results.

The main goals of the project are as follows:
- Assessing the integration of small-scale CSP technology with other renewable energy systems
- Testing innovative technologies for thermal and electric storage
- Assessing different applications of CSP technology for thermal energy and electricity generation
- Enhancing the know-how on control algorithms used to improve both programmability and dispatchability of renewable energy generation, with the aim to foster the future development of smart grids
- Promoting the diffusion of zero-emission distributed energy technologies in Sardinia
- Evaluating the opportunity to replicate project results in Sardinia as well as in other Mediterranean areas.

Related documents
Brochure of the project [file.pdf]