Concentrated solar power
“Is there a way to generate solar power without using photovoltaics?”
Solar PV systems are one of the most ingenious gifts that technologists have bestowed upon humanity. However, engineers are a rather creative people and like to do the same thing in multiple ways. So how can we “re-invent the wheel” when it comes to solar power? Well, we know that the sun produces sun rays. And if we focus these sun rays onto a focal point, then a large amount of energy can be transferred to an object that point. So what if we were to take a large array of concave lenses, focus all of the sunlight onto a source of water, and use the resulting energy to turn said water into steam to drive a turbine that generates electricity? This is the operating principle behind a system known as concentrated solar power and is commonly used in highly irradiated areas such as California, Spain, and South Africa.