The Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project by SolarReserve is a 110 MW plant, that uses molten salt storage to deliver power to the grid, located near Tonopah, Nevada. Once constructed, it will power up to 75,000 homes during peak electricity periods.
This 540-foot tower will have a 100-foot receiver on top of it and there will be a field of 10,000 billboard size mirrors, called heliostats, around the tower to produce electricity from the sun 10 to 15 hours a day.
The Solar project is expected to start delivering 110 megawatts by the end of 2013.
Sunlight is reflected onto a 100-foot receiver which house a series of tubes of circulating salt. The heliostat field will be about two miles across.
“Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project will reduce the nation’s reliance on fossil energy supplies, producing enough solar energy in one year equivalent to about one-fourth of the total output of Hoover Dam. The project uses a hybrid cooling power system so that water use is at a strict minimum in this important desert ecosystem. Solar-only energy avoids greenhouse gas emissions produced by a mid-sized fossil-fueled power plant.”