When China wakes China tops the world’s carbon emission ranking, but is highly committed to climate action. As evidence of this, in 2015 China committed to reduce its carbon intensity (CO2 emissions per unit of gross domestic product) by 60–65% from the 2005 level and to lift the share of non-fossil energy in its primary energy consumption to around 20%. The Badaling concentrated solar power plant project, developed by the Chinese Academy of Sciences, will help achieve that goal. It has been installed northwest of Beijing not far from the Great Wall. EDF is involved in this project through a joint research programme to improve the power plant’s operation and pave the way for future Group projects.
A tower and reflector mirrors A strange 108 metre high twisted tower overlooks 100 large reflector mirrors that concentrate the sun’s rays and reflect them up to a receiver at the top of the tower. Here, the water in the tower circuit is converted into steam heated to 400 degrees Celsius. The mirrors are adjusted automatically from a control room to track the sun’s path. The power plant can store the energy in oil or steam with one hour’s autonomy. Particularly suitable for regions with long hours of sunlight, this promising solution maximises solar power generation while the fluid receiver can store the energy to ensure power availability even at night.