The global CSP market. A decade of strong growth


The CSP market remains less established compared to other renewable energy markets. Nonetheless, in 2014 the sector continued nearly a decade of strong growth. During the course of the year, four new projects totalling over 0.9 GW, increased the total global installed capacity by 27% to nearly 4.4 GW. In the five years from the end of 2009 to the end of 2014, global operating capacity rose by an annual average of 46%. The United States was the global market leader for the second consecutive year, with India the only other country to bring new capacity into commercial operation during 2014. South Africa continues to emerge as a major market, with the greatest level of development and interest in CSP in other new markets with high direct normal irradiance. These are some of the main findings of the CSP market taken from the document “Renewables 2015. Global Status Report”, recently published by REN21.

Although parabolic trough plants represent the bulk of existing capacity, 2014 was a notable year in terms of the diversification of the CSP technology landscape. Capacities of new parabolic trough and tower plants drew closer, with 46% of installed capacity corresponding to parabolic trough technology, and 41% in tower technology.

The increase in tower capacity was due to commissioning in the United States of the Ivanpah plant, the largest CSP plant in the world. The world’s largest linear Fresnel plant (125 MW), equivalent to 13% of global added capacity, came on line in India, further diversifying the mix of added technologies. By early 2015, parabolic trough plants accounted for just over half of the capacity under construction, while towers/central receivers represented approximately 40%. Read more…

Article published in: FuturENERGY July-August 2015