Odeillo solar furnace

Odeillo solar furnace

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Credit: CHRIS HELLIER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Odeillo solar furnace. This array of 9500 parabolic mirrors receives sunlight reflected from an array of 64 flat mirrors (not seen). The parabolic mirrors focus the sunlight onto an area in the central tower (right). This concentrates the energy in a small area and achieves high temperatures of up to 3500 degrees Celsius. This can be used in the form of thermal power, or directly to heat objects. This solar furnace, at Odeillo, France, opened in 1970 and is the largest in the world.

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