Concentrating Solar Power appears as a primary technology in all future energy scenarios in Chile

  • International seminar analyzed the experience of China in the development of CSP technology and the possibilities of Chile in the future.
  • The meeting featured prominent international and national exponents and 50 people attended in person and about 200 joined via on line.
  • Experts said that it is necessary to have incentives that allow the valuation of technology and its contribution to the National Electric System.

Concentrating Solar Power  has a great future in Chile, that was one of the conclusions of the Seminar “China-Chile: Opportunities and challenges for the development of CSP” that brought together national and international experts around the analysis of this solar technology and the experience of the Asian country, which has a portfolio of CSP projects already developed and others in planning for the next few years.
On the occasion it was concluded that it is necessary to deliver clear signals on the valuation of the attributes of the technology and that this allows the acceleration of the penetration of CSP. “We are committed to Concentrating Solar Power  as a key technology, which provides flexibility and stability to the National Electric System, but which needs clear regulation,” said Cristián Sepúlveda, executive manager of the ACSP.

Meanwhile, Juan Carlos Araneda, Planning Deputy Manager of the National Electric Coordinator, highlighted that one of the great challenges of the National Electric System is the decarbonization process that requires technologies such as CSP. “The operation of Solar PV plants (day) requires energy storage (night), especially in the “Norte Grande” (Atacama desert): an opportunity for CSP”, said. “We hope that from 2028 onwards, more CSP projects can materialize, given their construction times,” he concluded, highlighting the projections that the agency has for technology, in which in all scenarios, CSP appears as the primary technology.
In the same way, Francisco López, viceminister of Energy, highlighted the role that the CSP will have in the National Electric System. “It is a source of basal energy for the Electric System and flexible with attributes that complement the need for photovoltaic and wind systems,” he highlighted.

The Seminar was organized by the company Cosin Solar, who develop projects in China and highlight that, currently in the Asian country, there are 10 CSP facilities in operation and another nine initiatives are planned. The company is committed to strong technological development and expects prices for technology to continue to decline.
“Chile is one of the countries with the greatest potential for solar applications in the world. The Atacama desert doubles in solar radiation the areas of China that develop the technology ”, highlighted Jin Jianxiang, chairman of Cosin Solar, recognizing the interest it generates in China, the development of technology and projects in our Chile. In addition, he remarked that, although the company promotes other variable energies such as photovoltaic and wind, he believes that CSP is essential for the stability of the National Electric System thanks to its attributes.

For the ACSP, the success of the Seminar demonstrates the interest generated by technology and hence the need to move towards the recognition of the attributes of the CSP. “There are other countries where the value of technology is beginning to be recognized. Spain, which has been one of the leaders, has reassessed the need for technology like this. Opportunities open up in the USA and China. It is important to count on the collaboration of the different players in the market to be able to make the technology take off and approve the best conditions that Chile has, ”said Fernando González, president of ASCP.
As part of the Seminar, the Senator and president of the Future Commission of the chilean Senate , Guido Girardi, highlighted that we have a great opportunity as a country and the CSP is one of those opportunities. “Chile could be the world greatest energy supplier. We must put ourselves in that perspective,” he said.

In the seminar 50 people participated live, due to the restrictions due to the Pandemic, and more than 200 people from different parts of the world were connected. In addition to those mentioned, it had exhibitions from the University of Chile -which highlighted the academic work in the country-, InvestChile, who highlighted the conditions of our country for investment in renewable energy and SQM, who showed the work they did with salts plots in the atacama desert.

In addition, the role of the CSP and its relationship with green hydrogen were analyzed in a conversation panel that included, among others, María Paz de la Cruz, CEO of H2 Chile, Marcelo Mena, academic from the University of Valparaíso and representatives of Chinese companies such as Cosin Solar, Power Grid and Power China and with the moderation of the Corfo expert, Ana María Ruz.


Check the full seminar here


Download the presentantions here