A number of factors are creating an increased market potential for small trough power technology. These include the need for distributed power systems for rural communities worldwide, the need to generate more electricity by non-combustion renewable processes, the need for sustainable power for economic growth in developing countries, and the deregulation and privatization of the electrical generation sector worldwide. Parabolic trough collector technology has been used in large central station power plants. Organic Rankine cycle (ORC) air-cooled modular power units have been successfully applied for large and small-scale geothermal power plants, with over 600 MW of capacity, during the same period. The merging of these two technologies to produce distributed modular power plants in the 200 kW to 10 MW range offers a new application for both technologies. It is our objective in this paper to introduce a modular trough power plant (MTPP) and discuss its performance and the cost of electricity generation from such system.

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