CSP Apollo
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CSP Apollo Solar Receiver with Supercritical Carbon Dioxide

Problem Statement & Value Proposition

This program addresses the Department of Energy $0.06/kW-hr Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) energy target by 2020 by coupling the solar absorber, the thermal energy storage, commercial wind turbine tower technology, and a high-efficiency supercritical carbon dioxide (sCO2) Brayton cycle into a single system. The result is a significant departure from the state-of-the-art in CSP plant layout.

By mounting much of the componentry up-tower the overall system may be simpler, less expensive, factory-assembled, truck-transportable, and modular. Critical to the success of this program is a high-energy-density thermochemical Thermal Energy Storage (TES) system which consists of a coupled high temperature metal hydride (HTMH) and a low temperature metal hydride (LTMH), and Brayton’s low-cost quartz tube window.


  • In its 2012 SunShot Vision Study, the DoE identified
    high-efficiency sCO2 power cycles as an enabling
    technology critical to achieving the 6¢/kWh LCOE goal
  • At that time, there was no existing receiver technology for
    transferring absorbed solar energy directly into sCO2- Challenging operating conditions (>700 C, 25 MPa)