Renewable energy: Turning salt into power

Last updated at 15:54
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In Morocco, in north west Africa, salt is being used to keep the lights on in the city of Ouarzazate at night time

We put it on our food but did you know salt can also generate electricity?

In Morocco, in north west Africa, salt is being used to keep the lights on in the city of Ouarzazate at night time.

How does it work?
Curved mirrored solar panels reflect heat from the sun on to oil filled tubesEVN
These curved mirrored solar panels reflect heat from the sun on to oil filled tubes

Mirrors focus the sun's heat onto special tubes filled with oil.

The heat from the tubes creates steam that then generates power during the day.

Oil filled tubes which creates steam on heating from solar energyEVN
The heat from the panels is transferred to these oil filled tubes which creates steam to generate energy

The heat from the mirrors is also used to melt the salt to a temperature of 500 degrees celsius - that's five times hotter than boiling water.

The salt can then stay hot for up to eight hours so it can carry on making the steam to generate even more power.

Steam billows from a chimney at the solar power plant in MoroccoEVN
Steam billows from a chimney at the solar power plant in Morocco