The companies Capsun Technologies and Ghenova Ingeniería have promoted and patented this world pioneering technology that combines photovoltaic and solar thermal energy in the same plant.

CTA and CDTI have co-financed this technology that promises to be the great solution in efficiency and profitability for the energy sector.

Bluesolar is the first concept for large-scale plants that integrates photovoltaic and solar thermal energy in a single plant through its innovative hybrid panels, enabling uninterrupted electricity generation. It is a new plant concept based on solar panels that also function as concentrating mirrors, using a patented technology of selective optical light filters. The filter makes it possible to combine both technologies, replacing the concentrating mirrors with filters integrated into photovoltaic panels that continue to generate electricity while reflecting heat, which is used for thermal storage or direct steam generation.

According to BlueSolar CEO Sebastián Caparrós, «The integration of photovoltaic plants with thermal storage plants using BlueSolar technology results in a plant concept that is much more efficient, modular, reliable, scalable and less technologically complex than current solar thermal plants. In addition, it allows PV plants to produce energy uninterruptedly, as the new plant concept has been designed to be hybridised with standard PV plants, both already in operation and under construction, optimising the current electricity infrastructure». He added that «the key is the high performance of the technology, which allows electricity to be stored from the grid or from other renewable plants with an electrical efficiency of over 90% and without degradation, which is a disruption to thermal storage, not only improving the efficiency of existing electric or hydraulic pumped storage batteries, but also doing so at a much lower cost».

The technical manager of the Energy and Environment sector of CTA, Germán López, stresses that «the application of this technology is of great importance in the current process of energy transition» and explains that «the implementation of photovoltaic plants with thermal cogeneration that we are trying to achieve, based on the successful development of the use of selective optical filters of solar radiation, will contribute to increasing the manageability of photovoltaic plants as well as satisfying the demand for thermal energy in industrial processes».

It is also a technology compatible with green hydrogen generation, especially important for its derivatives such as methanol or ammonia, which require uninterrupted renewable electricity supply, as well as for coupling to thermal and reverse osmosis desalination plants, which have high thermal and electricity consumption, respectively.

Pre-pilot results are encouraging, and BlueSolar has the potential to become the world’s first solar technology that enables uninterrupted power supply at a market price, without the need for subsidies or special feed-in tariffs, thus achieving price stability and independence from fossil fuels.