Flabeg Concentrating Solar Power in South Africa

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With 40 years of experience in concentrated solar thermal power plant technology and a wealth of experience covering 130 years in glass refinement, FLABEG is the expert when it comes to mirrors for solar energy. 
FLABEG participates as exhibitor at the 1st CSP Today South Africa event in Johannesburg (7-8 February). FLABEG has installed almost six million solar mirrors for Concentrated Solar Power projects all over the world. Some of these mirrors have been in operation for 30 years, full evidence of the permanent performance and durability of FLABEG mirrors. With numerous projects in Spain, the USA, Egypt and Abu Dhabi and a total of 1.8 GW, FLABEG is now the international market leader for solar mirrors.

FLABEG mirrors are distinguished by first-class efficiency, the result of unsurpassed know-how and many years of experience in bending and coating. This expertise guarantees power plant operators a higher energy yield than the yield of solar fields equipped with rival products. More than 85% of the Concentrating Solar Power project developers on the market appreciate this commitment to quality.

As an independent company, FLABEG supplies innovative mirrors made of annealed glass to comply with the highest specification standards. Annealed glass can be bent better than tempered glass and it also has better fracture properties. Glass breaking generally occurs on the corners and edges of mirrors, usually on the periphery of solar fields. While mirrors made of annealed glass still function, tempered glass breaks into thousands of pieces, which, in a worst case, could damage other mirrors and components when the wind is strong and also seriously endanger solar field workers. This is why, as early at the end of the 1970s, FLABEG deliberately decided against tempered glass and installed 5-mm mirrors instead of standard 4-mm mirrors on the periphery. Breakage, at a rate of 0.025 %, has been virtually eliminated.

As a pioneer, FLABEG continuously optimizes its production processes to enhance its own competitive capacity as well as that of its customers. This is shown in regular product innovations, such as an anti-soiling coating for solar mirrors. As well as significantly enhancing average mirror reflectivity, this coating also guarantees a reduction in maintenance costs arising as a result of longer washing cycles.

FLABEG is a forward-looking partner, keeping the needs of its customers in mind by developing custom-made concepts adapted to local environmental conditions. Production facilities worldwide, in Europe, Asia and America, make it possible to develop customer-related logistics concepts. Customers know they have made a secure investment – in a company that is not dependent on the interests of a large group, a company that financial institutes trust because of the durability of its products.

FLABEG is looking to make Concentrating Solar Power technology more cost-efficient in the long term. In cooperation with its development partners schlaich bergermann und partner, the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and the Fraunhofer IML (Institute for Material Flow and Logistics), and with the support of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU), FLABEG has developed a new panel for solar thermal power plants. The Ultimate Trough® is 25 % more cost-effective than the established Eurotrough, thus significantly enhancing the competitive power of CSP technology. FLABEG is now extending its expertise, moving from mirror manufacturing to the provision of engineering services and project development support for solar fields.

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