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3M teamed up with Gossamer Space frame to build the world’s largest convex superstructures. These enormous silver reflective convex sun trackers, known as (CSP) Concentrated Sun Power, focus the sun towards a heating element.


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West array opening up to the sun



This heating element is then charged by the sun and superheats a liquid oil. That oil, in turn, makes steam and the steam producers power. This plant makes 10 megawatts per day or enough power for about 4,000 homes.


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In the past, these convex structures were a fraction of the size due to the limitations of the mirror being made out of glass. 3M has made a new reflective material that has the same output power as a glass mirror. The new film can be applied to any structure and any shape. When the sun is reflected into a single beam, it’s Bristol white with a temperature of 400 degrees Celsius or 752 Fahrenheit. Working within the field of mirrors was a real treat and provided endless photo opportunities for our client.


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The only trick is to wear a lot of sunscreen.






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