By John Conroy
In the Australian Renewables Agency backed study, consultants Parsons Brinckerhoff found that a 50 MW solar thermal plant near Port Augusta’s existing power stations was technically feasible, with such a plant offering a longer operation life than a hybrid station. “Alinta is now focusing its pre-feasibility work into a stand-alone solar thermal plant using ‘power tower’ technology that would see a field of mirrors concentrate light into a central receiver," ARENA chief Igor Frischknecht said. “A stand-alone option was favoured over hybridising existing coal-fired plants due to lower technology risks and the capability to operate on a longer life cycle. “This next stage of the investigation will give a clearer indication of the costs, logistics and overall feasibility of the plant.
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