Inauguration of the first European mirror park in Antwerp
The Limburg-based energy company Azteq has inaugurated the first installation in Europe capable of producing heat via solar mirrors. It is an innovative and highly efficient ecological process.
5-metre-long curved mirrors have been installed at the site of ADPO, a company specialising in chemicals storage at the Port of Antwerp, over a surface area of 1,100 m². They rotate with the sun and concentrate their radiation on a central tube filled with liquid which, when heated, converts to steam. This technical feat, aimed at the industrial sector, is a first in Europe.
According to Koen Vermout, director of the Limburg-based start-up Azteq, this technology is three times more efficient than photovoltaic panels. "We convert 68% of the solar radiation into energy, compared to 15 to 18% for solar panels. What’s more, the temperature can reach 400 degrees and the heat produced can be stored in insulated containers for use at night."
At ADPO's Antwerp site, the heat produced is used to keep the raw materials in a liquid state, and to clean the tanks.
Various other countries have shown an interest. Because according to Koen Vermout, "our advantage is that we can reach very high temperatures. That could be interesting for bottling plants, breweries, food processing companies and the chemical sector." The aim is to install 150 hectares of mirrors in Europe within five years.