Tim Polega, General Manager of the Renewable Energy Department of Saudi Aramco, said at the 2016 MENASol Conference in Dubai: “According to our company’s forecast, if the photovoltaic system is equipped with a 7-hour solar cell energy storage system, the cost will be lower than that of heat storage. Under the type of solar thermal power generation system. Although the latest forecast shows that the investment cost of a new type of solar thermal power station will continue to decline, by 2026, once the solar cell energy storage period of the photovoltaic system reaches 15 hours, its cost will be lower. The cost of power generation for new CSP stations.”
Saudi Aramco also predicts that in the next ten years, the investment cost of CSP stations that can store heat for up to 6 hours will show a straight downward trend-from $5.32/W in 2016 to $4.28/W in 2021, even As low as about $3.80/W.
The current installed capacity of global CSP stations is about 5GW. According to Saudi Aramco’s forecast, by 2021, it is expected to add another 4GW of installed capacity, and between 2022 and 2026, the installed capacity will increase by another 8GW.
Belen Gallego, director of strategy and business development at Atarenewables, a technical consulting company, said: “Although the current grid deployment needs have opened a window for solar and heat, the cost reduction of photovoltaic systems has kept it a priority. Therefore, we must Efforts should be made to make the cost of CSP drop to catch up with the development speed of photovoltaic solar energy storage.”