Italian energy giant Enel has unveiled its Archimede solar thermal power plant in Sicily, Italy.
The Archimede plant is the first in the world to use molten salts as heat transfer fluid, integrate a combined-cycle gas facility and a solar thermal power plant, the company said in a statement.
The 5MW plant will save 2,100t of oil equivalent a year and reduce CO2 emissions by about 3,250t.
The solar thermal power plant has a field of about 30,000m² of parabolic mirrors to concentrate sunlight onto 5,400m of pipes carrying the molten salt fluid.
The collected thermal energy produces high pressure steam that is channeled into the turbines of the power plant to produce electricity.
The solar mirrors, a steam generator and two heat storage tanks make up the solar portion of the system.