Solar energy is the future, but how can you produce electricity for the entire world in an efficient and affordable way?
That’s the question that’s been raised by a company called iatan Power Plant.
iatan’s solar energy plants use water from a natural river and algae to generate electricity for thousands of homes and businesses across the world.
The plants are being tested and developed by the German engineering company Fraunhofer-Institut für Energie (FUEL), which is a member of the Fraunharfteilung für Siemens-Fluid Energy (SF-Eng).
The Fraunheitsgesellschaft für Südaführungszeitung, or FES, of the German Federal Ministry of Energy and Technology (BMG) is responsible for the research and development of solar power plants.
The solar power is powered by the water that is collected from the natural river in the far-flung region of northern Germany.
The water is heated by steam generated by a turbine.
The steam is then piped to a turbine, where it is turned into electricity by the sun’s rays.
The electricity generated by the turbine is fed into a water cooling system and the water is pumped back into the plant for the next few hours.
“We’re building a large solar plant, and we’re looking at the technology for an additional 1,000 megawatts of capacity,” says Dr. Dieter Stachmann, who heads the Frauenkreuzstelle Frauenfabrik Wirtschaftschutz (FSB), which runs the solar power system at the plant.
The sun’s energy is enough to power a small town of about 800 people for more than one day, while it is enough for more, Stachman says.
The facility has already produced more than 60 megawatts and Stachmats energy is used for cooling the turbine blades, which generate steam.
“If you want to use a power plant in a large city, you need to have a lot of water cooling and a lot more water, but we have both of these at the facility,” Stachmans company spokesman Thomas Käfner tells ABC News.
The Frauenhofer-Ingelheim Süddeutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (FES) works with Fraunherr-Instiut führtliche Solar (FIS) and Frauengemeinsches Forschutz-Instituut f.
Solar Fuels (FSI), a subsidiary of Fraunheim Söhne.
iTan Power Plant is not the first to be built using solar energy.
In 2012, a solar-powered plant was built in Turkey, and this solar power facility also produced electricity for many cities in Germany.
This is not an isolated case either.
Stachmeister says that the FES is also considering developing solar energy in countries like Spain, where solar panels have been installed in homes and offices.
“In Turkey, they installed the solar panels in the roofs, and then the energy is distributed by wind, so it is not just about a few people but also the entire community,” Stachelmann says.
“The energy system has to be integrated into the local economy and the whole community needs to benefit.”
The Frauhrgesellscheinungszentrum Frau und Südtliche Wirtschutzforschung (FEWF) of the Ministry of Economy, Energy and Transport in Germany is also involved in the project.
“These solar plants are also being built in countries where solar energy is a relatively cheap source of energy, like in the U.S.,” Käffner says.
According to Stachminister, the FEWF is considering developing more solar power stations in other parts of the world in the future.