EnviroMission’s Arizona Solar Tower Project is a breakthrough in the renewable energy field. With the capacity to generate 200MW power, enough to power 150,000 US homes, it will capture worldwide attention.
The best part about this project is that it will generate clean renewable energy without using any water. If we compare energy produced from this solar tower to energy produced through traditional power generation methods, EnviroMission’s solar tower is likely to offset the release of one million tons of greenhouse gases per year and will save about one billion gallons of potable water annually.
At 800-plus meters (2,625 ft) tall, the chimney of this tower will become one of the world’s tallest buildings. To put it in perspective, it will be twice as high as the Empire State Building and is on track to be the second-tallest manmade structure in the world.
The base of this structure is about two miles wide which acts like a giant greenhouse. When sun rays fall, the air contained in this huge greenhouse-like structure is heated by sunshine. This results in the rise of hot air up the updraft tower. There are some turbines at the base of the tower that produce electricity from this natural updraft.
Solar updraft power technology behind this project shows the way to generate highly sustainable electricity in worldwide deserts. This power house will work in any weather and even at night, as it works on temperature differential, not on absolute temperature. Moreover, it requires almost no maintenance except for servicing of turbines from time to time.
EnviroMission is currently going through the permit approval process in Arizona. The company expects to begin construction in late 2014.