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SSIC / Si3N4 Ceramic in Solar industry

pressureless sintered silicon carbide ceramic (SSiC)/Silicon nitride (SI3N4) developed at the advantage of better heat transfer from the hot ceramic to the streaming air in comparison to the conventional receiver concept with extruded ceramic honeycombs.

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What makes solar tower power plants so interesting for the electricity market?     

Solar energy is by far the largest resource among renewable energies – and solar tower power plants enable particularly high efficiencies. They can thus make an important contribution to independence from fossil fuels. The task now is to reduce electricity production costs.


It is particularly important to achieve higher operating temperatures at the receiver.  The receiver must operate at 1000 to 1200 °C, which corresponds to an increase of up to 42 % compared to the current standard.  The receiver is the element of the tower power plant that absorbs the sunlight bundled by the heliostats, i.e. the solar mirrors, and emits the heat released into the targeted air flow.  An innovative energy conversion process from thermal to electrical energy is also required.  An important part of this is an improved control system so that the mirrors of the heliostat field are always optimally aligned with the receiver.  In addition to increasing the efficiency of the power plant and its components.


Ceramics especially in two crucial components: The component with the highest thermal load is the receiver.   It requires a particularly resistant material that can absorb the incoming sunlight and heat up without losing too much energy through backscatter losses.   The use of ceramics is not new here.   However, the pressureless sintered silicon carbide foam ceramic (SSiC) developed at the advantage of better heat transfer from the hot ceramic to the streaming air in comparison to the conventional receiver concept with extruded ceramic honeycombs.



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