CSP – How Concentrated Solar Power Works

The smarter E Podcast Episode 150 | September 14, 2023 | Language: English

A really hot topic: Using solar energy through highly concentrated mirror systems, we can achieve high temperatures of 150 - 1500 Celsius to drive power cycles (electricity generation) or industrial processes such as cement production or green hydrogen. The technology is commonly known as concentrating solar power (CSP) and typically includes storage to provide energy even when the sun is not shining. But how far along is CSP technology? How does it differ from PV? Where is the greatest potential? And what role will CSP play in a future renewable energy mix?

We talk to Wes Stein. He is Chief Research Scientist for Solar Technologies at CSIRO, Australia's national science organization and chair of the SolarPaces Conference 2023.


  • 02:22 How does CSP work, what are the main advantages & differences to PV?
  • 08:55 What role does CSP play in providing heat for industrial processes?
  • 13:13 Current global market: What is the current market for CSP? Which countries & regions have the most potential?
  • 17:56 Future prospects and current R&D hot topics

About The smarter E Podcast

The smarter E podcast is all about the current trends and developments in a renewable, decentralized and digital energy industry. Our moderators Tobias Bücklein and Zackes Brustik welcome and interview personalities who shape our industry and drive developments forward. A new episode is published every Thursday.

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About Wes Stein

Wes Stein, Chief Research Scientist for Solar Technologies at CSIRO

Wes Stein is a Chief Research Scientist for Solar Technologies at CSIRO. He has been active in CSP research for over 25 years and was instrumental in establishing the National Solar Energy Centre at CSIRO, including building Australia's first solar tower. He is also the Chief Technologist for the Australian Solar Thermal Research Institute where he leads the development of strategies and technologies for the next generation of CSP. Prior to CSIRO, he worked in the power industry for 20 years in power station operation and design, as well as investigating and developing new energy technologies for utilities.

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