What Sets Us Apart
We offer cost effective CSP renewable energy technology with the power to transform world energy systems
Vast Solar’s story is an Australian innovation story . We have developed, tested and proven our technology at our pilot site at the beautiful Jemalong Station, 30km west of Forbes in central NSW.
Read on for more about what sets us apart, including how our technology adds value to energy systems that are in transition.
Vast Solar’s CSP system is an improvement over monolithic tower CSP systems because:
- Our towers are small and our fields are modular; realising high optical efficiencies. We don’t rely on a single very tall tower and one receiver to capture and store the suns heat in molten salt. Instead, we use a greater number of small towers each with a dedicated, densely configured field of heliostats located close by. This means our system has the ability to direct and capture the suns heat much more efficiently and effectively.
- We capture and store the sun’s heat efficiently via a unique, proprietary heat transfer fluid (HTF) and ‘thermal’ storage system. Unlike monolithic tower systems, which often use molten salt to capture and store thermal heat, Vast Solar’s design utilises liquid sodium to capture and transfer thermal heat to our molten salt storage system. Vast Solar’s custom HTF system makes possible the realisation of our unique modular field system as well as the very high thermal efficiencies from field to storage that Vast Solar technology delivers.
- Our heliostats are dynamic and clever. Vast Solar’s unique heliostat control system and operational componentry are intelligently designed and operated for maximum field optical efficiency. The system enables our heliostats to respond appropriately to the suns movements each day of the year, to capture and transfer the maximum amount of free thermal energy from the sun, directly to our receiver towers.
- Our system is modular, flexible and scalable. Our unique tower and field design, HTF system design and storage system means that utility scale CSP can be built quickly and cost effectively. Vast Solar CSP facilities can start small and grow over time, as more field modules are added, to extract ever greater efficiencies from the common thermal energy store and power block.
- Our towers and heliostats are designed for cost effective sourcing, configuration and installation. They are built using replicable, industrially ‘manufacturable’ designs and techniques and simple to source components, that can be easily flat packed or transported by container for rapid turn-around on-site or near site assembly and construction.
- Vast Solar’s CSP system core components are cost effective through all product life cycle stages: design, procurement and manufacture, operations and maintenance, to decommissioning.
Technology that helps drive the change to a clean energy future and adds value to energy systems in transition in more ways than one.
Technology that helps maintain the value and performance of established power networks.
We’re not only making new utility scale renewable energy power generation with storage available. Our technology also offers energy investors and operators an important avenue to improve grid stability and to build the resilience of their power transmission and distribution systems.
The high quality renewable power (power that is reliable and synchronous) that Vast Solar CSP can deliver thereby supports the retention of asset value of power transmission and distribution systems.
We value the vital role that other renewable sources of energy have to play in creating a more mixed source energy system. However, as more renewable energy systems provide power to the grid, instability can increase. Because Vast Solar’s energy storage and steam turbine system generates high quality, fully dispatchable electricity, our system can deliver a load that can materially enhance grid stability and complement other renewable sources. These features will help smooth the transition to a more mixed energy future by adding resilience to local and regional energy generation and distribution assets.
Storage technology that can deliver renewable energy 24 hours a day
Vast Solar’s CSP technology includes storage that enables renewable energy to be generated and distributed 24 hours a day so that households, business and industry can access renewable energy at peak periods or when the sun has gone down or the wind doesn’t blow.
The power to affordably store thermal energy and then use this heat to generate and dispatch renewable energy is one of Vast Solar’s key competitive advantages over other renewable energy technologies.
Our ability to cost effectively store (thermal energy) and to dispatch renewable power when other renewable energy generators are not able to, means that our technology complements the contribution that other renewable energy sources can make and also helps to grow the overall contribution that renewable energy can make to a robust and stable power, transmission and distribution system.
We’re proud to be growing the role that CSP will play in the transition to a renewable energy future. We’re excited that our technology can add value to network operators and renewable energy generators so that together, we can all speed the transition the world needs now.