Techno-Economic Evaluation of a Salt Gradient Solar Pond: A Potential Energy Source for Seawater Desalination and Power Generation

V. Sharma, G. Fiorenza, G. Braccio


Possible applications of a salt gradient solar pond have been evaluated. The topic is very interesting especially for the countries located within the South Mediterranean belt, generally characterised on one hand by a high availability of solar radiation, on the other by a serious lack of both electric energy and drinking water. Economic factor being one of the main hindrances to the spreading of solar devices so far, an attempt has been made to estimate production cost of both energy and water by using a medium to large-scale solar pond. The influence of plant size, in a range roughly extended from 100,000 to 1,000,000 m?, has been considered. In addition, a cost sensitivity analysis for various factors, such like solar pond reliability, price and efficiency, has been performed. Finally the results achieved have been compared to those relevant to fossil fuel based systems and conventional low-temperature solar technology, both from the economic and technical point of view.


salt gradient solar pond, power generation, seawater desalination, economic evaluation, sensitivity analysis, low-temperature solar technologies

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