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Solar Thermal Power Plants: Paraboloic - Dish/Stirling

A Dish-Stirling module consists of one parabolic reflector and one absorber, which is located near the focus of the reflector. The whole module is following the sun via a biaxial tracking system and is able to achieve temperatures up to 900°C.

tech-dish.jpg Functional Diagram

Technology description

The medium inside the absorber is driving a Stirling engine or a gas turbine in order to generate electricity. As a difference between all other solar power system the section of the stirling engine is directly connected to the parabolic mirror and therefore is also following the sun.

The typical power range of one Dish-Stirling module lays between 5 to 50 kW. Thus it is ideal for decentral local small-scale operation. Still by using several units larger power scales are easily possible. This way Dish-Stirling engines are an ecological alternative to todays common diesel engines in electricity production. By using fossil fuels for backup, firing electricity production is independent from sunshine.

Assets and Drawbacks

  • Extensive reduction of climate and corrosive gases like carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide and dust particles
  • Central or decentral operation
  • Operation rage between 5 kW and several 100 MW
  • Stand-alone operation possible
  • High energy density, low land use
  • Short construction time

Further detailed information can be found at
Technology Characterization Solar Dish Systems


  • SBP Dish/Stirling
  • SAIC/STM SunDish
  • SES Dish/Stirling System