Solar Thermochemistry

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Solar reactor in the lab of Prof. Aldo Steinfeld und doctoral student Philipp Furler at ETHZ (Zurich, Switzerland). This lab has done a lot of work on solar thermochemistry, including the solar upgrading of hydrocarbons.
Ausra-type solar concentrator. Potential collector for solar process heat.

Thermochemistry is the study of heat flow to or from a chemical reaction. Solar thermochemistry is an emerging process technology that uses concentrated solar energy to drive endothermic chemical reactions at elevated temperatures.


  • production of carbon-neutral fuels (examples: water splitting or solar upgrading of hydrocarbons)
  • solar metallurgy
  • dissociation reactions, e.g. zinc (project: "SOLZINC")
  • purification reactions
  • A photogalvanic device is a type of battery in which the cell solution (or equivalent) forms energy-rich chemical intermediates when illuminated
  • Photoelectrochemical cells or PECs consist of a semiconductor, typically titanium dioxide or related titanates, immersed in an electrolyte.

Related pages on OSE Wiki

Metal Refining, Heliostat, Solar metallurgy, Solar Upgrading of Hydrocarbons

External Links