Solar Fresnel technology
Solar-Fresnel technology consists of several flat or slightly curved mirrors -- a collector element -- that focus sunlight onto an absorber tube placed several meters above the mirrors. That absorber tube is equipped with a secondary reflector, which is open on its lower side to collect the solar radiation that gets past the absorber tube and subsequently deflects it back onto the tube. Inside that absorber tube is water that heats to approximately 450° to 500° C and is converted to steam.
Due to its design, the Fresnel collector is not susceptible to damage from strong winds and requires relatively little space only. As the Solar-Fresnel technology is still in its development phase, reliable information on the profitability of the collector will only be available in the medium term after testing in large-scale test facilities.
Possibilities for application
The main field of application for parabolic trough collectors and solar towers is the generation of electricity, whereas Solar-Fresnel technology is to be mainly employed for the production of steam and process heat as well as for the hybrid power generation (fossil plus solar).