SolarTherm is a Modelica-based simulator for concentrating solar thermal (CST) systems. It aims to provide an easy way to simulate and optimise CST systems, including but not limited to those systems that produce electricity, solar fules, or heat for industrial processes. The project is focussed on the research community, who want to be able to quickly assess novel combinations of different receivers, storage, fluids, control strategies, power cycles, or/and heat integration. The simulation is at a level of detail required to accurately assess whole system performance and economic viability. More details were presented by Scott et al (2017).

SolarTherm contains two main parts: (1) a Modelica model library for common CST components and system configurations, and (2) a collection of tools for organising parameters, running simulations, training surrogate models, and analysing results. Details can be seen in this documentation.

A list of publication that employed SolarTherm includes:

  • Turchi et al, 2021. CSP Gen3: Liquid-Phase Pathway to SunShot, NREL Technical Report NREL/TP-5700-79323
  • Gunawan et al, 2021. System modelling and optimisation of a particle-based CSP system, Technical Report, Solar Thermal Group, Australian National University
  • Rahbari et al, 2021 . Methanol fuel production from solar-assisted supercritical water gasification of algae: A techno-economic annual optimisation, Sustainable Energy & Fuels
  • Fontalvo et al, 2020. System-level simulation of molten salt small-scale CSP, AIP Conference Proceedings
  • Rahbari et al, 2020. The impact of low-cost H2 on the solar fuel process design: A case study in solar gasified Fischer–Tropsch fuels, AIP Conference Proceedings
  • Kee et al, 2020. System level analysis of a sodium boiler receiver and PCM storage CSP plant using SolarTherm, AIP Conference Proceedings
  • Calle et al, 2020. Techno-economic assessment of a high-efficiency, low-cost solar-thermal power system with sodium receiver, phase-change material storage, and supercritical CO2 recompression Brayton cycle, Solar Energy
  • Guccione, 2020. Design and Optimization of a Sodium-Molten Salt Heat Exchanger for Concentrating Solar Power applications, master thesis, KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM).
  • Shirazi et al, 2019a. System-level simulation of a solar-driven liquid fuel production plant via gasification-Fischer-Tropsch route, AIP Conference Proceedings
  • Shirazi et al, 2019b. A solar fuel plant via supercritical water gasification integrated with Fischer-Tropsch synthesis: System-level dynamic simulation and optimisation, Energy Conversion and Management
  • Rahbari et al, 2019. A solar fuel plant via supercritical water gasification integrated with Fischer-Tropsch synthesis: Steady-state modelling and techno-economic assessment, Energy Conversion and Management
  • Calle et al, 2018a. System-level simulation of a novel solar power tower plant based on a sodium receiver, PCM storage and sCO2 power block, AIP Conference Proceedings
  • Rahbari et al, 2018. Dynamic Performance of Fischer-Tropsch Liquid Fuel Production from Solar-Assisted Supercritical Water Gasification of Algae, AIChE Annual Meeting
  • Calle et al, 2018b. SolarTherm: A New Modelica Library and Simulation Platform for Concentrating Solar Thermal Power Systems, Simul. Notes Eur.
  • Kee et al, 2018. A dynamic model of a sodium/salt PCM energy storage system, MATHMOD.
  • Scott et al, 2017. A flexible Modelica-based simulator for CSP systems, AIP Conference Proceedings