Creating New High-Efficiency Solar Power Systems

Thayer receives grant to advance concentrating solar-thermal power research and development.

 Read the full story, published by Thayer School of Engineering.

Dartmouth was selected to receive a $400,000 award from the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office to advance concentrating solar-thermal power (CSP) research and development. The project, led by Associate Professor of Engineering Jifeng Liu, will focus on a new type of solar absorber aimed at optimizing energy conversion efficiency.

Liu’s team, which includes research scientist Xiaoxin Wang and engineering PhD students Eldred Lee and Can Xu, will be developing a solar absorber coating that not only converts over 95 percent of the absorbed energy into heat but also can endure long-term high-temperature conditions. These features represent the next generation of high-efficiency CSP systems.

“We are honored to receive this award to continue our research and technology transfer on air-stable, high-temperature, ultrahigh efficiency solar selective coatings,” says Liu. “This project will make notable contributions to DOE’s goal of 5¢/kWh for CSP systems by 2030, and expedite its commercial applications through collaborations with Norwich Solar Technologies, a local high-tech company led by Troy McBride, Thayer ’01, and Joel Stettenheim, Guarini ’12.”