StratoSolar PV provides a complete, lower cost replacement for fossil fuels
- StratoSolar PV power plants provide low-cost, sustainable, zero-carbon electricity from a combination of solar energy and gravity energy storage.
- The power plants are a complete, dispatchable, lower cost, direct replacement for electricity generation from coal and natural gas.
- They need no backup fossil fuel generation, no electricity grid changes for transmission, and no additional electricity storage.
- They offer enormous cost, environmental and energy security benefits over fossil fuels.
- They can scale from small MW scale plants for islands, remote locations and/or developing countries to very large multi-GigaWatt scale plants positioned near large urban areas.
- They can eventually meet the complete world energy demand using only clean, safe, sustainable solar energy without stressing available land or natural resources. Ground PV, because of daytime intermittency, can only ever provide a partial energy solution.
StratoSolar solves all the problems of current Solar PV electricity generation
- Cost of generation: Despite dramatic PV panel and system price reductions in recent years, today's Solar PV electricity is still expensive. Investors still need the support of substantial government subsidies and mandates for the foreseeable future. StratoSolar's 3X higher utilization factor reduces PV generated electricity cost to a fraction of ground PV generation and substantially less than fossil fuel generation. This eliminates the need for subsidies and mandates and solves the cost of generation problem.
- Daytime Intermittency: Clouds and bad weather can block sunlight for days to weeks. For PV on the ground, coping with this random long duration intermittency requires either expensive backup fossil fuel generation capacity or excess clean energy generation capacity combined with excess long distance transmission capacity. These solutions cost more than PV generation and substantially increase the overall cost of generated electricity. StratoSolar is above clouds and weather and provides uninterrupted generation during daylight hours, directly solving the daytime intermittency problem without a need for backup generation, excess capacity or long distance transmission.
- Night Time Generation: There is no electricity storage solution that can provide cost competitive night time electricity today. StratoSolar includes low cost gravity energy storage, enabled by the high altitude of StratoSolar platforms, solving the night time generation problem.
- Geography: Solar energy is abundant in southern deserts where there are no people and scarce near northern urban areas where most people are located. Exploiting deserts means using expensive long distance electricity transmission. StratoSolar exploits abundant solar energy near urban areas, eliminating the need for additional long distance transmission and solves the geographic location problem.
- Liquid Fuels: Electricity alone is not a complete energy solution. Electricity generation needs to be cheap enough to enable the synthesis of affordable liquid fuels for transportation and long term energy storage. StratoSolar's initial low cost for electricity, combined with the historical cost reduction roadmap, quickly leads to a sustainable, complete energy solution that includes affordable synthetic fuels.