Solar energy
Energy, solar energy

Pointing accuracy for heliostats

Concentrated solar thermal power plants currently deliver power outputs of 100 megawatts or more. To generate this energy, thousands of mirrors must be precisely and continuously aligned with the sun to project a stable sunspot onto the central heat receiver to collect energy for the generation of steam for turbines. Technical pointing accuracy for the collection mirrors requires position sensors that deliver high resolution, accuracy, and repeatability.

Practical, reliable pointing accuracy requires position sensors built to withstand the extreme environmental conditions found in most desert installations, where wide temperature swings can occur throughout the day and night and with the change of seasons. Balluff's magnetic tape and ring encoders have a proven track record in this application, with an installed base in the tens of thousands.

Application examples

Position heliostats
Sun tracking for parabolic troughs
Align parabolic troughs with the angle of the sun
Align Fresnel mirrors with the angle of the sun