skip to main content

Comparative Study Between Direct Steam Generation and Molten Salt Solar Tower Plants in the Climatic Conditions of the Eastern Moroccan Region

Hanane Ait Lahoussine Ouali1Mohammed Amine Moussaoui1 Ahmed Mezrhab1Hassane Naji2

1Laboratoire de Mécanique et d’Energétique, Faculté des Sciences, Université Mohammed 1, 60000 Oujda, Morocco

2Univ. Artois, Univ. Lille, IMT & Yncréa-HEI, Laboratoire Génie Civil & géo-Environnement (EA 4515), Technoparc Futura, F-62400 Béthune, France, France

Received: 22 Mar 2020; Revised: 7 May 2020; Accepted: 8 May 2020; Published: 15 Jul 2020; Available online: 14 May 2020.
Editor(s): H Hadiyanto
Open Access Copyright (c) 2020 The Authors. Published by Centre of Biomass and Renewable Energy (CBIORE)
Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Citation Format:

This study deals with a numerical investigation to assess and compare the thermal and economic performance of two solar tower power systems. It concerns the Molten Salt (MS) and Direct Steam Generation (DSG) technologies used as heat carrier and storage. For this purpose, a 50 MWe solar tower plant without thermal energy  storage under the climatic conditions of the eastern Moroccan region is simulated with the System Advisor Model (SAM) software. The meteorological data has been collected via a high precision meteorological station located in Oujda city(34°40'53'' N 1°54'30.9'' W). The results are presented in terms of monthly energy production, annual energy output, and Levelized Electricity Cost (LEC). From these findings, it can be concluded that, for an amount annual Direct Normal Irradiance (DNI) of 1989.9 kWh/m2/yr, the molten salt plant has the highest annual energy production than the DSG (86.3 GWh for MS against 83.3 GWh for DSG) and the LEC of the Molten salt plant is 12.5 % lower than the DSG plant. 

Fulltext View|Download
Keywords: Direct Steam Generation; LEC, Molten salt; Solar thermal power plant; heat transfer fluid

Article Metrics:

  1. Abbas, M., and Merzouk, N. K., (2012), Techno economic study of solar thermal power plants for centralized electricity generation in Algeria, 2nd Int. Symposium on Environment Friendly Energies and Applications, IEEE, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK, 25-27 June.
  2. Ait Lahoussine Ouali, H., Guechchati, R., Moussaoui, M. A., and Mezrhab, A. (2017). Performance of parabolic through solar power plant Under Weather conditions of the Oujda city in Morocco, Appl. Sol. Energy, 53(1), 45-52.
  3. Ait Lahoussine Ouali, H., Merrouni, A.A., Moussoaui, M. A., and Mezrhab, A., (2015), Electricity yield analysis of a 50 MW solar tower plant under Moroccan climate, 1st Int. Conference on Electrical and Information Technologies ICEIT, IEEE, Marrakech, Morocco, 25-27 March.
  4. Bataineh, K. M., and Gharaibeh, A., (2018), Optimization Analyses of Parabolic Trough (CSP) Plants for the Desert Regions of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), Jordan J. Mech. Ind. Eng., vol. 12 (1), 33- 43
  5. Benammar, S., Khellaf, A., and Mohammedi, K. (2014), Contribution to the modeling and simulation of solar power tower plants using energy analysis, Energy Convers. Manag., 78, 923-930.
  6. Ben Fares, M. S., & Abderafi, S. (2018). Water consumption analysis of Moroccan concentrating solar power station. Solar Energy, 172, 146-151.
  7. Blair, N., Mehos, M., and Christensen, C., (2008), Sensitivity of concentrating solar power trough performance, cost and financing with solar advisor model, 14th Biennial CSP Solar PACES Symposium, 4-7 March, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
  8. Blanco, M. J., and Miller, S., (2017), Introduction to concentrating solar thermal (CST) technologies, Advances in Concentrating Solar Thermal Research and Technology, 3-25.
  9. Chentouf, M., and Allouch, M., (2018), Renewable and Alternative Energy Deployment in Morocco and Recent Developments in the National Electricity Sector, MOJ Solar Photoen Sys, 2(1): 00017,, 10.15406/oajp.2018.02.00017
  10. Denholm, P., Y-H. Wana, Y-H., Hummona, M., and Mehos, M., (2014), The value of CSP with thermal energy storage in the western United States, Energy Proc., 49, 1622-1631.
  11. Dersch, J., Geyer, M., Herrmann, U., Jones, S. A., Kelly, B., Kistner, R., Ortmanns, W., Pitz-Paal, R., and Henry Price, (2004). Trough Integration into Power Plants-a Study on the Performance and Economy of Integrated Solar Combined Cycle Systems. Energy, 29, 947-959.
  12. Dobos, A., Neises, T., Wagner, M., (2014), Advances in CSP simulation technology in the System Advisor Model. Energy Procedia 49, 2482–2489.
  13. Ezziyyani, M, Hamdache, A., Ezziyyani, M., and L. Cherrat, L., (2019). Impacts of Climate Change on the Production, Yield and Cost of Adaptation of Varieties Imported from Strawberry Plants in the Perimeter of Loukkos (Morocco), Int. Conf. on Advanced Intelligent Systems for Sustainable Development, AI2SD’2018, 911, 37-45.
  14. Gottschalk, A., and Ramamoorthi, U., (2018). Parametric Simulation and Economic Estimation of Thermal Energy Storage in Solar Power Tower, Materials Today: Proceedings, 5, 1571-1577
  15. Guechchati, R., Moussaoui, M. A., and Mezrhab A. (2012) Improving energy efficient envelope design for Moroccan houses, Int. J. Ambient Energy, 33(4), 184-192.
  16. Guzman, L., Henao, A., and Vasquez, R., (2014), Simulation and optimization of a parabolic trough solar power plant in the city of Barranquilla by using system advisor model (SAM), Energy Procedia, 57, 497-506
  17. Heller, P., (2017), The Performance of Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) Systems, Modelling, Measurement and Assessment, ISBN 9780081004470, Woodhead Publishing
  18. Hirbodi, K., Enjavi-Arsanjani, M., & Yaghoubi, M. (2020). Techno-economic assessment and environmental impact of concentrating solar power plants in Iran. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 120, 109642.
  19. Latzke, M, Alexoupoulos, S., Kronhardt, V., Rendón, C., and Sattler, J., (2015), Comparison of potential sites in China for erecting a hybrid solar tower power plant with air receiver, Energy Proc., 69, 1327-1334.
  20. Moreno-Tejera, S., Silva-Pérez, M.A., Lillo-Bravo, I., and Ramírez-Santigosa, L., (2016), Solar resource assessment in Seville, Spain. Statistical characterization of solar radiation at different time resolutions, Sol. Energy, 132, 430-441.
  21. Moser, M., Pecchi, M., and Fend, T., 2019, Techno-economic assessment of solar hydrogen production by means of thermo-chemical cycles, Energies, 12, 352.
  22. National Renewable Energy Laboratory, 2013, Simple Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) Calculator,
  23. Moukhtar, I., A. Elbaset, A., Z. El Dein, A., Qudaih, Y., Blagin, E., Uglanov, D., & Mitani, Y. (2018). Electric power regulation and modeling of a central tower receiver power plant based on artificial neural network technique. Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy.
  24. Neises, T., & Wagner, M. J. (2012). Simulation of Direct Steam Power Tower Concentrated Solar Plant. ASME 2012 6th Int. Conference on Energy Sustainability
  25. Pitz-Paal, R. et al., (2007), Development Steps for Parabolic Trough Solar Power Technologies with Maximum Impact on Cost Reduction, J. Sol. Energy Eng., 129, 371-377.
  26. Praveen R.P, (2019). Performance Analysis and Optimization of Central Receiver Solar Thermal Power Plants for Utility Scale Power Generation. Sustainability, 12(1), 127.
  27. Richts, C., (2012), The Moroccan solar plan. A comparative analysis of CSP and PV utilization until 2020. M.Sc. degree, University of Kassel, Germany
  28. Sharma, C., Sharma, A.K., Mullick, S.C., and Kandpal, T.C., (2018), Cost reduction potential of parabolic trough based concentrating solar power plants in India, Energy Sustain. Dev., 42, 121-128.
  29. Srilakshmi, G., Venkatesh, V., Thirumalai, N.C., and Suresh, N.S., (2015), Challenges and opportunities for Solar Tower technology in India, Renew. Sust. Energy Rev., 45, 698-709.
  30. Wagner, M. J., & Gilman, P. (2011). Technical manual for the SAM physical trough model (No. NREL/TP-5500-51825). National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
  31. Wagner, M.J., and Zhu, G., (2012), A direct-steam linear Fresnel performance model for NREL's system advisor model, ESFuelCell2012-91317. Proceedings of the ASME, 6th Int. Conf. on Energy Sustainability & 10th Fuel Cell Science, Engineering and Technology Conf., San Diego, 23-26 July
  32. Xu, E., Yu, Q., Wang, Z., and Yang, C., (2011), Modeling and simulation of 1 MW DAHAN solar thermal power tower plant, Renew. Energy, 36, 848-857.
  33. Yogev, A., Kribus, A., Epstein, M., and Kogan, A., (1998), Solar “tower reflector” systems: a new approach for high-temperature solar plants, Int. J. Hydrogen Energy, 23.4, 239-245.
  34. Zhang, Q., Wang, Z., Du, X., Yu, G., and Wu, H., (2019), Dynamic simulation of steam generation system in solar tower power plant, Renew. Energy, 135, 866-876.
  35. Zhou, H., Shi, H., Zhu, Y., & Fang, W. (2020). An experimental investigation of temperature distribution and heat loss in molten salt tanks in concentrating solar power plants. Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy, 12(1), 014101.

Last update: 2021-06-23 16:27:38

No citation recorded.

Last update: 2021-06-23 16:27:38

No citation recorded.