Sun to steam: Interfacing solar heat and legacy infrastructure to decarbonize industrial processes

September 20, 2019 | Case Study

Industrial process heat (IPH) represents about 8% of total U.S. energy demand, resulting in more than 50% of direct industrial greenhouse gas emissions. By replacing fossil fuels in heat production, technologies harnessing solar heat for industrial processes (SHIP) can reduce carbon emissions. Depending on the specific technology (e.g., parabolic trough, linear Fresnel) and system design, concentrated solar power (CSP) can provide steam at up to 200 °C. This addresses a significant market, as more than 50% of IPH demand falls below 300 °C, with the largest part consisting of steam between 120 °C and 200 °C. While CSP technology is fairly mature for electricity production, its application for SHIP is still early-stage. 

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