20 Percent More Cost Effective: Our New Ultimate Trough

The Ultimate Trough™ is our latest development in solar collectors. It will be about 20 percent more cost effective relative to our current standard parabolic trough, the Eurotrough, by lowering specific cost (€/m²) and improving performance.

The Ultimate Trough™ will be optimized for large solar fields in the range of 500,000 to 2,500,000 m² of aperture area.

A larger diameter of the heat collection elements, supported by improved selective coatings with lower emissivity, allows a solar field design with lower specific parasitic consumption and less piping in the solar field.

Also, the number of units to be assembled, checked, mounted, aligned and commissioned will be reduced by larger solar collector elements. The number of drives, sensors and controls is reduced by more than 50 percent. Additional cost savings will result due to its better optical efficiency.

Optical Performance

Photogrammetry and deflectrometry methods confirm the increase of the Ultimate Trough™ collector efficiency. The measurement results of the mirrors and the collector structure show an overall average focus deviation (FDx) of 7.8 mm. In consideration of the aperture width of 7.5 m and the corresponding higher focal length this value surpasses the design criterion for the optical performance and validates an optical efficiency of more than 82 % of the Ultimate Trough™.

Euro Trough - Ultimate Trough™

  Unit Eurotrough Ultimate Trough™ UT / ET
SF area 1,239,305 1,139,373 91.9%
No. of loops loops 379 166 43.8%
Gross Electric Output MWh/a 484,268 484,480 100.0%
Efficiency (net)   14.3% 15.5% 108.5%
SCE # 18,192 6,640 36.5%
Mirrors # 509,376 318,720 62.6%
Heat Collection Elements # 54,576 33,200 60.8%
Drives / Sensors / Controls # 1,516 664 43.8%
Pylon foundations # 19,708 7,304 37.1%
Swivel joints # 3,032 1,328 43.8%