Decarbonization Avenue : Concentrated Solar Power

In fact

Potential for small scale CSP

Prior to 2010, solar PV and solar CSP were pretty much at the same stage in terms of total global installations - both were just  scratching the surface.

Zoom to 2020, and solar PV has simply raced ahead and now has a gargantuan 700 GW of installed capacity (that would have entailed a total investment of close $1 trillion). 

Solar CSP is still scratching the ground, limping with just a few hundreds of MWs to showcase.

Hardly can be called a tight race, or even a fair race!

Of the many parameters that resulted in the rise and rise of solar PV, one interesting factor is its modularity.

One of its key strengths, solar PV’s modularity makes it highly attractive for the small scale and distributed markets. While these may not contribute to the bulk of the solar PV installations today, the distributed solar PV market has in a way accelerated the positive user perceptions and policy-maker's interest towards this technology, thereby giving a big boost to its bigger cousin, utility scale solar PV. 

Solar CSP works differently. Scale is a strength for the technology. For the foreseeable furute, it is unlikely solar CSP can work at very small scales (say, less than 10 kW), but if it coul operate at small or medium scales (1 MW and above) at good efficiencies, it could make it highly attractive.

Relevant for

  • Mechanical engineer
  • Thermodynamics & heat sciences professional
  • Material sciences professional
  • Solar power professional

Innovation sector

  • Heat & thermodynamics
  • Mechanical engineering
  • Physics
  • Power engineering
  • Renewable energy sciences

Other In fact


  • University researcher
  • Corporate researcher
  • Startup or entrepreneur
  • Solution provider