Technology Development Manager
SunShot CSP Program
On Contract from SRA International, Inc.
Mark is a registered professional engineer with a background in the power industry engineering, procurement, and construction. He began work for the Solar Energy Technologies Office in 2007, focusing on market barriers to large-scale solar deployment. He has watched the state of the concentrating solar power (CSP) market change from nearly barren to flourishing.
"When I was first introduced to the DOE program, I was instantly 'hooked' by the scale of CSP and its high potential to have a serious impact on the utility-scale electrical power generation industry," Mark says.
Mark provides technical management for a portfolio of SunShot investments, with a primary emphasis on power cycles and solar collectors. This work allows him to be at the forefront of technologies that provide critical solutions necessary for CSP to thrive in both the near-term and future energy markets.
Several projects that Mark manages are likely to cut solar collector costs in half within the next few years, and reduce those costs even further by the end of the decade. Two projects in the area of power cycles—the 10-Megawatt Supercritical Carbon Dioxide Turbine and Supercritical Carbon Dioxide Turbo-Expander and Heat Exchangers projects—involve supercritical carbon dioxide (s-CO2) turbines, which have the potential to yield thermal-to-electric conversion efficiencies that are greater than 50%. At these efficiencies, the total collector area can be reduced by 15% to 25%.
In December 2012, SunShot released a funding opportunity announcement (FOA) for CSP Heat Integration for Baseload Renewable Energy Development (HIBRED). Projects selected for this FOA support advancement of the hybridization of CSP technologies with large fossil fuel plants. Mark believes these efforts have the potential to open new viable markets in the near term to strengthen the CSP supply chain. In the future, a number of the current SunShot projects will integrate CSP directly into efficient and technologically mature combustion gas turbines, enabling greater than 50% solar thermal-to-electric conversion efficiency.
In alignment with SunShot goals, Mark intends to help bring progressive technology forward to achieve aggressive cost reductions and performance advances. In this way, he believes that that CSP can be the power generation technology of choice for many new utility power generation needs. He sees tremendous value and potential for CSP to deliver solutions to our energy markets—solutions that are viable in the market now and that will enable strong growth to serve broader markets throughout the coming years.
Mark manages the following projects:
- Brayton Energy: Brayton Solar Power Conversion System (CSP R&D FOA)
- Abengoa Solar: Advanced Nitrate Salt Central Receiver Power Plant (Baseload CSP FOA)
- HiTek: Low-Cost Heliostat Development (Baseload CSP FOA)
- Infinia: Innovative Phase Change Thermal Energy Storage Solution for Baseload Power (Baseload CSP FOA)
- SkyFuel: High-Concentration, Low-Cost Parabolic Trough System for Baseload CSP Generation (Baseload CSP FOA)
- Wilson Solar Power: Brayton Cycle Baseload Power Tower (Baseload CSP FOA)
- 3M Company: Next-Generation Solar Collectors for CSP (CSP SunShot FOA)
- Brayton Energy: High-Efficiency Receivers for Supercritical Carbon Dioxide Cycles (CSP SunShot FOA)
- BrightSource Energy: Flexible Assembly Solar Technology (CSP SunShot FOA)
- Jet Propulsion Laboratory: Low-Cost, Lightweight Solar Concentrators (CSP SunShot FOA)
- National Renewable Energy Laboratory: 10-Megawatt Supercritical-CO2 Turbine (CSP SunShot FOA)
- Oregon State University: High-Flux Microchannel Solar Receiver (CSP SunShot FOA)
- Pacific Northwest National Laboratory: Integrated Solar Thermochemical Reaction System (CSP SunShot FOA)
- Pennsylvania State University: Scattering Solar Thermal Concentrators (CSP SunShot FOA)
- Southwest Research Institute: CSP Tower Air Brayton Combustor (CSP SunShot FOA)
- Southwest Research Institute: Supercritical Carbon Dioxide Turbo-Expander and Heat Exchangers (CSP SunShot FOA)
- University of Arizona: Advanced Manufacture of Reflectors (CSP SunShot FOA)
- National Renewable Energy Laboratory: System Advisor Model Enhancements for CSP (National Laboratory R&D)
- National Renewable Energy Laboratory: Low-Cost Heliostat for Modular Systems (National Laboratory R&D
- National Renewable Energy Laboratory: Direct s-CO2 Receiver Development (National Laboratory R&D)
- Sandia National Laboratories: Dish/Stirling High-Performance Thermal Storage (National Laboratory R&D)
- Sandia National Laboratories: DOE National Solar Thermal Test Facility (National Laboratory R&D)
- Thermata: Heliostat System with Wireless Closed-Loop Control (CSP SunShot FOA)
- eSolar: Modular and Scalable Baseload Molten Salt Plant Conceptual Design and Feasibility (Baseload CSP FOA)
- PPG: Next-Generation Low-Cost Reflector (Baseload CSP FOA)
- Infinia: Innovative Application of Maintenance-Free Phase-Change Thermal Energy Storage for Dish Engine Systems (Thermal Storage FOA)
- Abengoa Solar: Advanced Polymeric Reflector for CSP Applications (CSP R&D FOA)
- Abengoa Solar: Next-Generation Parabolic Trough Collectors and Components for CSP Applications (CSP R&D FOA)
- Alcoa: System Design for CSP Technologies (CSP R&D FOA)
- Infinia: Maintenance-Free Stirling Engine for High-Performance Dish CSP (CSP R&D FOA)
- PPG: High Performance Reflector Panels for CSP Assemblies (CSP R&D FOA)
- Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne: Solar Power Tower Receiver Development (CSP R&D FOA)
- SkyFuel: Commercial Development of an Advanced Linear-Fresnel-Based CSP Concept (CSP R&D FOA)
- Solar Millennium: Advanced High Temperature Trough Collector Development (CSP R&D FOA)