Large Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) plants, a proven technology, are today generating many gigawatts of electricity all over the globe by converting sunlight to heat for making steam for turbine generators.
The addition of HYCSOS technology to new or existing CSP plants would double their power output without substantially increasing the capital cost of construction. The effect on the cost of solar electricity would be to decrease it by almost a factor of two, enough to make it viable in the marketplace
HYCSOS plants can easily incorporate cost effective thermal energy storage allowing electricity to be generated after sunset thereby increasing plant capacity factors.
An additional major advantage of HYCSOS is its flexibility to be used for water desalination by multistage distillation while simultaneously providing electricity to the grid. The revolutionary HYCSOS development will hasten the day for the sun to be both the default global energy source and a means for obtaining copious amounts of clean water.
HYCSOS technology accomplishes this by combining photovoltaic (PV or direct) and thermal (indirect) conversion in a single facility with the combined power output of separate PV and thermal installations.
- The fusion of PV and thermal conversion technologies is accomplished by disposing solar cells on the CSP heat receiving elements. These special solar cells are designed to convert light to electricity efficiently at the high operating temperature of the heat receiving elements.
- Recent advances in several areas of nanotechnology strongly suggest that a focused approach to the development of high temperature solar cells is highly likely to succeed.
The graphene based cells have the additional advantage of incorporating only plentiful and environmentally benign materials of construction.