Solar thermal energy can power large desalination plants

Wizard Power has reiterated its plans of proving that solar thermal energy can power large desalination plants.


According to, Wizard Power says its form of energy should be used to power desalination plants such as the one proposed by BHP Billiton. The company has completed land and geotechnical surveys of the site and expects to lay foundations by the end of the year.


The same report quoted Wizard Power's Artur Zawadski as saying that the initial plant is only a trial.


"We aim to be putting in a demonstration of solar thermal powered desalination specifically targeted to demonstrate to the local community, to the Government and to companies such as BHP Billiton the advantages of powering large scale desalination with solar thermal power," he reportedly said.


In May 2007, the Australian Government acknowledged the significance and commercial potential for the ammonia-dissociation solar energy storage system with a grant of A$7.4 million under the Advanced Electricity Storage Technology programme. This funding contributes to the Whyalla Solar Oasis demonstration project that will showcase a multi-dish power plant using the new second generation Big Dish technology with integrated ammonia-dissociation solar energy storage in Whyalla South Australia.


In a recent interview with, Zawadski had said, "Once the energy storage demonstration plant is demonstrated successfully, then it is planned to retrofit the storage solution onto the commercial plant."


It is said that the project will be the world's first demonstration of emission free baseload solar power and peak-following power-on-demand.


The Big Dish solar thermal concentrator field (six dishes) is expected to be completed in September 2009 and the ammonia thermochemical energy storage is expected to be completed in early 2010.


2nd Concentrated Solar Thermal Power Summit


Artur Zawadski, manager, business development and project delivery, Wizard Power is scheduled to speak during the 2nd Concentrated Solar Thermal Power Summit, to be held on 12-13 November in Seville.


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