Headline: Carlo Rubbia at the inauguration of the new Archimede Solar Plant

Carlo Rubbia interviewed at the inauguration of the new Archimede Solar Plant in Massa Martana, Italy

Prof. Carlo Rubbia, Scientific Director of the IASS gave a key-note address at the launch of the new Archimede Solar Plant in Massa Martana (Italy). As a joint venture of Angelantoni Industries (55%) and Siemens Energy (45%), it is expected to increase its production capacity to 75 thousand super-black vacuum receivers for Concentrated Solar Power plants per year. They use molten salt - potassium nitrate and sodium nitrate — at a temperature of up to 550 °C to produce steam, which powers an electrical generator. One of the major benefits of this technology, which was developed under Prof. Rubbia’s guidance when he was the President of ENEA (the Italian national agency for new technologies, energy and the environment), is that molten salts works at higher temperatures than oils, which only go up to about 390 °C, thus making the system far more efficient. The higher temperature also allows to use steam turbines of the sort already common in gas-fired power plants, so replacing conventional power plants with solar ones could be made easier. Furthermore, the Archimede technology, unlike conventional CSP based on oil, allows to store energy in molten salt tanks, so that the plants can generate electricity at any time and in all weather conditions, also when the sun is not shining.

Read full article on Il Sole 24 Ore, September 14th 2011