A study by THEnergy and Ripasso entitled “A hybrid solution with concentrated solar power (CSP) and fuel for baseload mining operations” analyses the fit of Stirling Hybrid solutions for the mining industry. The Stirling engine based solution uses in an integrated system solar with gas or diesel as an energy source.
Transport costs and “losses” increase the fuel costs largely, whereas the CSP plant is installed once and then provides energy. New built off-grid mines face often choices of paying for expensive grid-connection or generating the power onsite. On-site power stations often consist of diesel gensets. Stirling Hybrid solutions are an alternative to diesel gensets. If the solar irradiation is high the CSP plant can generate the total output power, and if the solar irradiation is not at its maximum the heat that is needed for the highly efficient Stirling engine can also be produced by various secondary fuel types.
This makes the fully integrated system ready for baseload applications found in mining. A variety of fuels can be used, including natural gas, CNG, LNG, LPG, biogas, industrial off gas, coal methane gas or even diesel. A combination of CSP and biogas is 100% renewable energy generation.
In combined mining and metal processing plants off-gas that otherwise would be flared can be used in the Ripasso Stirling Hybrid solutions. The Stirling engine itself is combustion free. The modular design allows for scalability in 33 kW steps and ensures a robust power generation. The modularity of the Stirling Hybrid solution reduces the probability of production losses due to power outages to an absolute minimum. The study also found advantages regarding the use of land and water. Both can be very critical for mining operations at remote locations.
“The Ripasso Stirling Hybrid solution fits very well to the requirement of mining companies whenever reliable baseload power is needed in sunny regions”, said Gunnar Larsson, CEO of Ripasso Energy. “We are frequently contacted by industrial consumers who suffer from production losses due to power outages.”
The Stirling solution is proven in naval applications and units of the Ripasso CSP system are currently installed in Southern Africa.
“It is important to indicate that Ripasso Energy belongs to Ahlström Capital, a family investment company that continues the heritage of the renowned Ahlström corporation”, stated Dr. Thomas Hillig, CEO of THEnergy. “A strong owner in dynamic environments is an important factor for long-term investments.”
Edited from press release by Angharad Lock
Read the article online at: https://www.worldcoal.com/mining/12022016/thenergy-report-renewables-for-mining-2058/