This special issue of the Journal of Solar Energy Engineering takes the opportunity to archive the status of the most recent RD&D achievements in solar thermal power at a critical moment in time. Different from photovoltaics, wind, or heating and cooling, the scientific community working on solar thermal power is a small family. Most of the enthusiastic scientists and engineers know each other personally; many of them have been dedicated to the subject for more than 10 years. The family is bonded by the vision to restart the commercial success of solar thermal power, after its first achievements between 1984 and 1990 with the installation in California of nine solar thermal power plants with a total capacity of 354 MWe. These plants, which are operating today at steadily increasing efficiency and reduced cost, have produced over 8 TWh of solar thermal electricity. They prove that...

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