electricity generation from solar ponds
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12-07-2010, 04:31 PM

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22-09-2010, 03:47 PM

More Info About electricity generation from solar ponds

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19-10-2010, 09:55 AM

.docx   Solar Ponds 1.docx (Size: 237.4 KB / Downloads: 126)
Formally known as a salinity gradient solar pond, solar ponds are an alternative source of harnessing the suns energy to heat water that can be converted to electricity. This technology is very basic and easy to use with adequate land space and proper design. For residential use, ponds need to be at least 12x12 feet and 3 feet deep and for commercial use ponds must be sized according to their functionality. Solar ponds require lots of sunlight and salt water. The first solar pond was discovered in the early 1900s in Transylvania and was naturally occurring. Following this discovery these ponds were replicated and dubbed solar ponds.
How they work
Solar ponds can be naturally occurring; however, most ponds are man-made. Once the pond is dug, the pond must be lined with an impermeable lining, preferable one that is insulating. Then the pond is filled with salty water. Once the sun hits the pond the water warms and divides into three layers. The top layer, known as the surface zone, is composed of primarily freshwater due to the fact that salt typically settles at the bottom of water. The middle layer is know as the insulation zone. The insulation zone has a higher salt concentration than the surface zone. Crucial to a solar pond is the bottom layer known as the storage zone. The storage zone is where all the hot water is held and this is what is converted into electricity. The hot salt water produced is similar in chemical characteristics to a brine.
In a typical freshwater pond, when the sun penetrates the water the layers that are heated up rise to the top of the pond and release the heat into the atmosphere. This is how a pond maintains a constant temperate. The oxygen in warm water is greater than cold water. This causes warm water to rise to the top of the water body and this heat is then released. 2
However, in a solar pond this process does not happen. Instead the water that is warmed is unable to rise to the top due to the salt concentration. Therefore, the warm water stays at the bottom of a pond and gets hotter and hotter with the more sunlight it receives. The bottom layer of a solar pond can reach 178 degrees farenheit.3
What allows a solar pond to be used as an energy source is that a pipe is placed at the bottom of the pond and draws the warm/ hot water out of the pond by a pump and is circulated through a piping system that utilizes the heat. It is similar to how radiant heat, or solar hot water heaters use the warm water. Once the water has run through the pipe it is deposited back into the pond in the storage zone so this water can be heated again. This system is a close system so is quite efficient in terms of water retention. Typically this is how a solar pond is used for heating purposes.
Solar ponds can be used in all climates as Long as there is plenty of sun. Even when a pond is frozen over, a salient gradient solar pond still produces hot water. Therefore, they can be used all over the United States and the world.4
Using a solar pond
Solar ponds have a number of uses. They are effective for heating facilities such as industrial complexes, greenhouses, and agricultural building. When used for heat, it is hard to regulate the temperature; therefore solar ponds are typically used in situations that the heat temperature does not have to be regulated.
Solar ponds are also used to produce electricity. In this case, the hot water produced is used to spin a turbine which generates electricity.5 Some solar ponds rely on solar powered pumps to push the water through the piping. This is a renewable and environmentally friend system for electricity production.

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