October 29, 2008

Al Gore's Super Solar Grid

This map from Nature magazine describes a proposal for concentrating solar power (CSP) plants in a gigantic super-grid.

From Nature, November 27, 2007, "Europe Looks to Draw Power from Africa
The power needs of Europe, the Middle Eastand North Africa could be met by an ambitious idea to network renewable energies across the region. The cornerstone of the plan, developed by a group of scientists, economists and businessmen, involves peppering the Sahara Desert with solar thermal power plants, then transmitting the electricity through massive grids.
Prince Hassan bin Talal of Jordan was scheduled to present this green-energy idea, dubbed DESERTEC, to members of the European Parliament in Brussels on 28 November.
The vision is ambitious: it would require roughly 1,000 100-megawatt power plants, using mirrors to concentrate energy from the Sun's rays, throughout the Middle East and North Africa to meet the region's projected energy needs. A high-efficiency electricity grid, yet to be built, would then ferry the power around and across the Mediterranean Sea and northern Europe.

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