Saturday, May 5, 2007

Turbines inside a huge Solar Tower

Last year, Australian power company EnviroMission proposed the Solar Tower project - a $225 million green power experiment to construct a 1,600 foot tower with enough generating capacity to fuel 100,000 homes.

Instead of relying on solar cells, the tower acts like a giant greenhouse. The sun's energy is harnessed to create warm air currents that will drive a series of power generating turbines inside the tower. Located under the glaring sun of the Australian outback, the 50 megawatt pilot project will stand taller than Chicago's Sears Tower and sit 260 feet in diameter at the base. The capacity for the technology is far greater though, and has gained the attention of Chinese investors. In 2002, Xiang Jiang Industrial became EnviroMission's second largest shareholder and plans to build a 200 megawatt tower in Shanghai, China.

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