- APPLIED THERMAL ENGINEERING Journal
- March 2015
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- During the operation of solar power towers there are occasions, commonly in the summer season, where some of the heliostats have to stop focussing on the central receiver, located at the top of the tower, because the maximum thermal power that the receiver can withstand has been reached. The highest cooling demand takes place at these same occasions. In the present paper, the exceeding heliostats are focused to a second receiver, using the extra heat as a source of absorption chillers. The chilled water is used to cool buildings or offices, using a district cooling network, reducing greatly the electricity usage. In this work we have analysed the case of a circular field of heliostats focussing at an external receiver of 120 MW of thermal power. The thermal power of the exceeding heliostats is able to supply steam to eight absorption chillers that produce cold water for a population of more that 90000 people via a network of more than the 50 km. The economical analysis shows that the district cooling system is profitable and an advantageous option for the consumers, that can obtain up to 75% savings on their electricity bills.
- solar cooling; central receiver; absorption chiller; district cooling network