In the hands of scientists - the power of 10,000 Suns

Nov 04, 2005

Solar research at Paul Scherrer Institut (Switzerland) takes a leap into the future today with the opening of the High-flux Solar Simulator. With this new instrument scientists will be able to carry out experiments under extremely high temperatures, independent of the weather.

The Laboratory for Solar Technology at PSI and the Professorship in Renewable Energy Carriers at ETHZ are jointly conducting research in high-temperature thermo-chemical processes to efficiently transform concentrated solar energy into storable and transportable chemical fuels.

In the new Solar Simulator the light from ten xenon arc lights is reflected on ellipsoidal reflectors and the concentrated energy delivered by this installation can reach power fluxes of 10,000 suns, (1 sun = 1 kW/m2) providing temperatures of up to 2500 degrees Celsius for experiments.

Research will focus on the development of solar reactor technology required for the production of fuels (e.g. hydrogen, zinc and syngas) and for the processing of energy intensive material commodities such as lime and metals.

Source: Paul Scherrer Institut

Explore further: Experiment with speeding ions verifies relativistic time dilation to new level of precision

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Tens of thousands expected at New York climate march

37 minutes ago

Celebrities, activists and political leaders are expected to join more than 100,000 people in New York Sunday for what could be the largest climate change protest in history, organizers said.

Team improves solar-cell efficiency

1 hour ago

New light has been shed on solar power generation using devices made with polymers, thanks to a collaboration between scientists in the University of Chicago's chemistry department, the Institute for Molecular ...

Calif. teachers fund to boost clean energy bets

1 hour ago

The California State Teachers' Retirement System says it plans to increase its investments in clean energy and technology to $3.7 billion, from $1.4 billion, over the next five years.

Alibaba surges in Wall Street debut

1 hour ago

A buying frenzy sent Alibaba shares sharply higher Friday as the Chinese online giant made its historic Wall Street trading debut.

Dwindling wind may tip predator-prey balance

1 hour ago

Bent and tossed by the wind, a field of soybean plants presents a challenge for an Asian lady beetle on the hunt for aphids. But what if the air—and the soybeans—were still?

Recommended for you

How Paramecium protozoa claw their way to the top

6 hours ago

The ability to swim upwards – towards the sun and food supplies – is vital for many aquatic microorganisms. Exactly how they are able to differentiate between above and below in often murky waters is ...

User comments : 0