Borg El Arab, Egypt, February 2018
MATS Plant Opening Ceremony
Borg El Arab Official MATS Plant Opening Ceremony has been organized on 27th February 2018 in Borg El Arab (Alexandria, Egypt). During the two-day event, a visit to the MATS plant is organized on 27th February and, on the following day, a workshop on “Public-Private Partnerships and Technology Development in renewable energy” has been organized in Cairo.
For more information click here.

Borg El Arab, Egypt, December 2017
"Solar Salts" loading and melting on MATS plant
Borg El Arab One major innovation proposed in MATS project is the use of Molten Salts as Heat Transfer Fluid in the linear focusing Solar Collectors, in a “stand-alone” plant on 1 MW range. This feature makes MATS plant the first of a kind in the world. The salt mixture, composed of sodium and potassium nitrates, has several positive features for CSP applications and for this reason it is often called “Solar Salt”: compared to thermal oils applied up to date in conventional plants, Solar Salts exhibit environmental, safety and technical features, including the possibility to operate at low pressures and reach temperatures as high as 550°C. An innovative method to mix, load and melt the salts directly in the Heat Storage Tank of the plant has been studied and tested at the beginning of plant operation.

Borg El Arab, Egypt, November 2017
Italian Ambassador to Cairo Giampaolo Cantini visits MATS plant
Borg El Arab On 19th November 2017 the Italian Ambassador to Cairo, Giampaolo Cantini visited MATS demo plant in Borg El Arab. Project coordinator Alberto Giaconia (ENEA) with partners illustrated the main features of the facility. On the one hand it was highlighted the innovative CSP technology demonstrated in this “first of a kind” plant; on the other hand it was remarked the ability of European partners to cooperate with local realities and to transfer know-how in solar power production. Furthermore, partners expressed the intention to replicate this very positive experience in other sites over the Egyptian and North African territories, also in the logic of development co-operation, to foster and disseminate innovative technologies in emerging economies.

Borg El Arab, Egypt, August 2017
Demo plant pre-commissioning activities start
Borg El Arab Preliminary testing and activities for plant commissioning started in August 2017 with hydraulic tests and flow tests in the solar field loop carried out by KT in cooperation with ENEA.

ENEA-Casaccia Research Center, Rome, Italy, July 2017
Training stage for MATS plant operators at ENEA
ENEA A training plan for MATS plant operators has been organized to transfer the necessary know-how to Egyptian personnel who will be in charge of plant operation and management, under the supervision of EU partners. After the training stage organized at NREA’s Kuraymat CSP plant in Egypt, an extensive 5-days training stage has been organized at ENEA-Casaccia Research Center in Rome. The training comprised theoretical classes and practical experiences, with trainers from ENEA and KT.

Borg El Arab, Egypt, July 2017
MATS project meeting & site visit
Borg El Arab Project meeting was organized on 12-13 July 2017 with MATS partner to review the status of the project and define future steps. During the meeting all partners visited the plant almost completed.

Borg El Arab, Egypt, June 2017
Installation of flexible tubes on MATS collectors in Egypt
Borg El Arab An innovative design for flexible tubes to be applied in MATS plant has been proposed by ENEA. This design will enhance plant operation and as-produced components have been installed on MATS solar collectors in Egypt.

ENEA-Casaccia Research Center, Rome, Italy, May 2017
MATS solar collector prototype in ENEA-Casaccia
ENEA A representative prototype of MATS collector was also installed in the molten salts loop of PCS facility in ENEA-Casaccia Research Center. This 100 m linear parabolic collector was supplied by the same manufacturer of MATS demo plant collectors, Lanaro Srl: thus, ENEA could preliminarily test the collector and ancillary components (e.g. flexible hoses) prior erection of the solar field in Egypt, to provide technical advice. Compared to the collectors installed in Egypt, this prototype shows some innovative features in the perspective of further improvement of the technology for future exploitation.

Borg El Arab, Egypt, May 2017
On-field characterization of installed solar collectors
Borg El Arab On 15-16 May 2017 Cranfield University characterized MATS solar collectors installed in Egypt. The reflectivity of mirrors was determined with systematic measurements to determine preliminary optical features and dusting effects in the desert environment. Furthermore, Cranfield University made photogrammetry measurements to qualify the installed collectors prior plant commissioning.

Ruths SpA, Genoa, Italy, May 2017
New Steam Generator design fabricated
Ruths SpA On 8 May 2017 the innovative Steam Generator built for MATS demo plant was ready for shipping to Egypt. ENEA and KT visited the manufacturer’s factory for acceptance tests. This component is the first if its kind, sized to produce superheated steam up to 480°C and 55 bar, with nominal power of 4 MW thermal. It will be introduced inside the solar energy storage tank filled with molten salts.

Kuraymat Solar Plant, Egypt, April 2017
Training stage for MATS plant operators at NREA’s Kuraymat 20 MW solar plant
Kuraymat A training plan for MATS plant operators has been organized to transfer the necessary know-how to Egyptian personnel who will be in charge of plant operation and management, under the supervision of EU partners. A 1st training stage has been organized at NREA’s Kuraymat CSP plant in Egypt, a 20 MW parabolic trough plant with diathermic oil. In Kuraymat plant Egyptian trainees were introduced to the operation of industrial (commercial) CSP plants, including control procedures and solar field management.

Cranfield, United Kingdom, April 2017
MATS plant simulation & modelling meeting
news1On 3-4 April 2017 a meeting has been organized between project partners involved in the development of MATS plant simulation and modelling tools. The meeting was hosted by Cranfield University, MATS project partner. During the meeting partners presented and defined the methodology to develop and validate a plant model to foresee the performance under different operation strategies. Hence, while the demo plant will demonstrate the “readiness‿of the CSP technology developed in MATS, the validated models will allow plant analysis under different scenarios, to support feasibility studies and exploitation strategy.

Borg El Arab, Egypt, March 2017
First solar collector on field
news1Solar collectors assemblies, supplied by Lanaro Srl (with reflective panels from Reflex Spa), have been delivered on site. After completion of solar field foundations by ORASCOM, the assembly of solar collectors started and first modules erected on MATS solar field. Meanwhile, civil works continued in other plant areas.

Marrakesh, Morocco, November 2016
MATS presentation at COP22
news1On 17th November 2016 MATS project has been presented by Dr. Alberto Giaconia (ENEA) at the United Nations Climate Change Conference 2016 (COM22), during a side event titled “Italy and Africa working towards energy access and sustainability: Opportunities, Challenges and Best Practices in achieving SDG7‿ The event was jointly organized by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the Italian Ministry of the Environment, Land and Sea. MATS project was introduced as “best practice example‿of R&D project, innovation and technology transfer in the context of international cooperation on renewable and sustainable energy.

Borg El Arab, Egypt, October 2016
First steps and footprints of MATS plant on Google Earth
news1It is already possible to identify the plant area and collectors direction (oriented exactly 23° 10‿East) Google Earth (coordinates: 30°51'36.4"N 29°34'39.2"E) where collectors‿foundations prints are identifiable, link:'36.4%22N+29%C2%B034'39.2%22E/@30.8601086,29.575368,675m/data=!3m2!1e3!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x0!8m2!3d30.860104!4d29.577556

Borg El Arab, Egypt, August 2016
Start-up of Construction Works in MATS site
news1In summer 2016, ORASCOM Construction, MATS project partner, started construction works on MATS plant site, in the selected area inside the City for Science and Technology (SRTA-City) in Borg El-Arab, Alexandria (Egypt). Before starting the earth movement works, ORASCOM had already installed office containers and temporary site facilities (water, drainage and power source) to be used during site works. Building permits have been obtained from local authorities in June 2016. Works consist of excavation, concrete works, soil replacement and densification in different plant areas, to provide reinforced concrete foundations to all facilities to be installed: solar collectors, piping supports, heat storage tank, gas heater (back-up unit), power block, desalination unit, etc.

Rome, Italy, July 2016
MATS project meeting
news1In July 2016 the design of MATS plant is completed and some major components (e.g. solar collectors and turbine) already ordered. Therefore it is time to start the construction works in the building site in Egypt. A project meeting with all consortium partners has been organized in Rome, hosted by KT, MATS partner in charge of Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) activities. The overall project progress and status has been reviewed and discussed by all partners and major technical issues were defined.

Cairo, Egypt, May 2016
MATS meeting in Egypt
news1 On 11-12 May 2016 a technical meeting has been organized in Egypt to review MATS plant design, in order to proceed with executive design and construction. Partners met in ASRT’s and ORASCOM’s offices in Cairo and, then, at the SRTA City in Borg El-Arab, followed by a site visit. Major technical and financial issues were defined to agree on the executive design and enhance start-up of works.

Rome, Italy, April 2016
Molten Salts Heater prototype in operation
news1MATS plant layout includes a back-up unit based on a Molten Salts Heater (MSH) using gas fuels. A representative MSH prototype has been designed, constructed and tested at ENEA-Casaccia research center (Rome). The prototype consists of a 90 kW finned tubes gas-molten salts heat exchanger, combined to a 500 kW gas burner and integrated in a molten salts experimental loop. This development has been achieved in also in cooperation with the project HYSOL ( sharing with MATS similar objectives about the qualification of a driven Molten Salts Heater for CSP hybridization. The mock-up has been successfully tested: correlations for the heat exchange between molten salts and flue gases and best operation practices have been obtained. The prototype is designed to be powered by either LPG or biogas-like mixtures in the perspective of CSP plant hybridization with biomass.

Rome, Italy, January 2016
MATS project meeting
news1After a long period dedicated to general and extensive project revision, MATS design activities restarted in September 2015. The overall project progress and status has been reviewed and discussed by all partners in a meeting organized by ENEA in Rome, on 27-28 January 2016. During the meeting technical issues were defined. Exploitation potentials were assessed too with comprehensive presentation by Dr. Mohamed El Sobki, NREA’s vice chairman, who presented the actual situation and policies dealing with the development of Renewable Energy Sources in Egypt. The meeting was also attended by the new Scientific and Technological Attaché at the Italian Embassy in Cairo, Dr. Claudio Margottini.

Las Vegas, Nevada, USA 17-20 June 2013
Solarpaces 2013
ENEA will present to the International conference a paper titled: "An innovative concept of a Thermal Energy Storage system based on the single tank configuration using stratifying Molten Salts as both HSM and HTF, and with an integrated Steam Generator". The ENEA's authors are: W. Gaggioli, F. Fabrizi, F. Fontana, P. Tarquini, L. Rinaldi. The proposed TES system uses the sensible heat of its storage medium (a mixture of 60% NaNO3 and 40% KNO3, whose melting point is at about 240°C). Its operation is based on the molten salt thermal stratification due to difference in density with temperature and its low thermal conductivity. It has been already verified that this stratification can be maintained quite constant for several hours without mixing. However, the presence of the integrated SG becomes the active principle that produces the stratification during the time. The single tank system with molten salt stratification is by itself an important improvement in terms of efficiency, reliability and cost reduction, with respect to a two-tank thermal storage system. In the present report is presented the state of art of this new technology.
Rabat, Morocco , 4-5 June 2013
During a visit in Morocco (Fès, Rabat), prof. Flavio Fontana had the opportunity to meet a group of professors of the Department of Physics - Faculty of Sciences in the University Mohammed V - Agdal, Rabat. A short overview on project perspectives, advanced ICT applications and modelling has been done about the CSP technology in relation to the MATS Project. Particular attention to the system analysis, simulation of distributed and heterogeneous virtual components concerning the Cyber Enterprise for Solar Thermodynamics Applications.
Sofia, Bulgaria 29-30 May 2013
9th South-East European Congress & Exhibition on Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
At the Inter EXPO Center of Sofia was held the SEE 2013 Conference. This event conforms that South-East Europe is a part of the global green revolution. Nearly 300 billion euros will be invested by 2020 in regional energy infrastructure, which will boost the economy by developing the bio-, wind-, solar-, geothermal- and hydro energy. The Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy (EE & RE) field confirmed that the South-East European region is an attractive market for investors. In this context ENEA has attended to the EXPO to meet the most important European companies and research institutes. In particular, Chinese and Bulgarian experts have been contacted into their stands where they have showed technologies and innovative solutions. In Sofia the commercial attaché of the Italian Embassy was also contacted to introduce the MATS project, the Cyber Enterprise technology applied to the CSP, the communication tools, the ENEA e-learning platforms and courses.
Nicosia, Cyprus 12th December 2012
ENEA (Eng. Fabrizio Fabrizi) took part to ESTELA's 4th STE Industry Forum, organised under the patronage of the 2012 Cyprus Presidency of the Council of the EU and the Cyprus Ministry of Commerce Industry and Tourism and in cooperation with the Cyprus Institute and its EWACC conference. During the manifestation, useful and interesting presentations have been held by expert speakers. During this meeting, that offered a special occasion to extend the MATS CSP Technology, a unique, open platform was provided, within which the key issues currently facing the industry were discussed.
Palermo, Italy, 18-19th September 2012
ANEST Conference
At the presence of Commissioner ENEA ing. G. Lelli a Conference on Solar Power in Sicily was held in Palermo; particular attention has been paid by the various speakers at the relationship between characteristics of the area (high insolation) and industrial potential. In this context, particular relevance was given to the Archimede project, the role of which in CPS and in the project MATS is significant. Prospects for industrial development, for opportunities and the involvement of stakeholders belonging to the main countries of the Mediterranean have been the subject of stimulating presentations.
Marrakech, Morocco, 11-14th September 2012
SolarPACES Symposium 2012
news1Fabrizio Fabrizi took part to "The SolarPACES 2012" that did take place in Marrakech, Morocco. During the SolarPACES symposium, the foremost in concentrating solar power and chemical energy systems, MATS Project was presented to the leading world experts. The presentation was carried out within the framework of a Conference, which did offer in depth a scientific programme, discussions on new developments in technology, politics, market and financing, and a forum for industry.

Palermo, Italy, 27th July 2012
Meeting at ENEA in Palermo
news1Eng. Flavio Fontana, within the Project MATS, took part to a meeting at the ENEA in Palermo where activities related to the Project itself and the Portal WEB-CESTA were discussed. In particular applicative and operative aspects of communication via WEB in both projects have been highlighted, including the use of e-learning.

Palermo, Italy, 26th July 2012
Meeting to the Palermo University
news1Eng. Fabrizio Fabrizi, within the Project MATS, took part in a meeting at the University of Palermo where a new CSP Experimental Area to build a Demonstrator Plant for didactical activity towards students and local SMEs were discussed. In particular theoretical and methodological approaches to integrate the traditional lecturers with a real time experience.

Cranfield University, UK, 4-5th July 2012
"MATS" FP7 Project 1st Dissemination event
news1In the framework of the MATS project, a 2-day workshop will be held at Cranfield University, UK on 4-5th July 2012 to address solar thermal technology and its deployment in concentrating solar power (CSP) systems for electrical power generation, heating and cooling, and desalination.
For more information, please click here.

Madrid, Spain, 4th July 2012
SFERA Annual Meeting
news1Eng. Fabrizio Fabrizi attended the Annual Meeting of the Project SFERA (Solar Facilities for the European Research Area) together with the other partners of that project: CIEMAT (Spain), CNRS (France), PSI (Switzerland), Weizmann Institute (Israel). The discussions on methodological aspects and applications relating to CSP technology are of considerable interest in connection with the MATS Project, in particular discussion was focused on the thermal energy storage, that is a key feature of concentrating solar power facilities.

Denver, Colorado, USA, 21-29th June 2012
EDMEDIA World Conference
news1Prof. Flavio Fontana took part at Denver (Colorado, U.S.A.) to the EdMedia World Conference International Conference on Educational Media and Technology, organized by the Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE).
In this multi-disciplinary forum devoted to the discussion and exchange of information on the research, development, and applications on all topics related to multimedia, hypermedia and telecommunications/distance education, Prof. Fontana showed a "Presentation on the Mobile QS Application" connected to the MATS Project. Also e-learning aspects have been discussed during this occasion.

La Pelanda (ex Mattatoio) Rome, 6-8th Juny 2012
WORKSHOP at "La Pelanda" Rome
news1The engineer Fabrizio Fabrizi, ENEA, presented the CPS (Concentrated Solar Power) technology and the Project MATS during the thematic workshop "The best brains do not flee: they are in the town" that took place in Rome the 6th, 7th and 8th June at La Pelanda (ex Mattatoio). The engineer Fabrizi's speech took place during the Session 'Science and Innovation for the Development', devoted to the technological innovation and its contributions to the improvement of life standard in the towns and to development. The presentation showed how an Italian idea will contribute to the development of a new renewable energy chain through the building of a plant in Egypt. Particular attention has been devoted to the job opportunities that the project MATS offers. Moreover, thanks to the presence of the engineer Anna Moreno, either the News site and the e-learning platform of the Energies School have been presented as a reference to the formative themes in the innovation field.

CEA, Grenoble, France, 24-25th May 2012
Grenoble Meeting
news1Grenoble Meeting: on 24-25 May 2012 a two days technical and organizational Meeting has been held at Grenoble (France) by the Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique (CEA) among the partners involved (ENEA, ASRT, Fraunhofer, CEA, Cranfield University, Technimont KT, ASE) to discuss the status of the work about both the Solar Field and the thermal energy storage integrated with the steam generator. Presentations and Relations concerned the simulation procedures and the preliminary experimental activities for the sub-system and components to be built.

Verona, Italy, 10th May 2012
Solar EXPO' 2012
news1In the area "Fiera di Verona" partners and participants to the MATS Project have followed a very important Meeting: SOLAREXPO "Energia Solare Termodinamica: come superare con successo le barriere allo sviluppo" (Thermodynamic Solar Energy: how to successfully overcome barriers to the development) where either technological and political-economical problems connected to Thermodinamic Solar Energy have been discussed in depth. Researchers, technologists, politicians and economists have analyzed matters concerning the solar energy under their respective areas of competence.
Participants to the MATS Project have taken part to several moments of the discussion, referring also the current experience of.
Athens, Greece, 12th December 2011
CSP Workshop on Solar Energy
news1On the occasion of EASAC's 10th Anniversary a Workshop on Solar Energy (CSP) has been held in Athens , Hall of the Academy of Athens, at 9-12 December 2011. As EASAC (European Academies Science Advisory Council) is formed by the National Science Academies of the EU Member States, it is of particular interest that eng. Fabrizio Fabrizi has presented MATS Project, showing either the main lines of the Project and its innovative aspects on the Concentrated Solar Energy Power (CSP).

Burg Al Arab, Egypt, 11th October 2011
EPC Meeting
news1A meeting has been organized between Tecnimont KT, Egyptian partners (ASRT, NREA, Delft Environment, Orascom), researchers from the City for Scientific Research and Technology Applications and ENEA. The main purpose of the meeting is a technical site visit for the MATS facility to be built. A discussion about logistics, services and construction issues has been held between the participants.

Massa Martana (Terni), Italy, 5th September 2011
A New Archimede Solar Energy Factory
news1Alberto Giaconia took part to the inaugural ceremony of "Archimede Solar Energy New Factory" for the integrated production of the receiver tubes, belonging to the Angelantoni Group, which is active in the Sector of the Renewable Energies. The event is of particular interest for the MATS Project, because Archimede produces Receiver Tubes for solar thermal power plants, in collaboration with ENEA. Present to the ceremony was also another partner of MATS project, the Prof. Amr Amin of the Egyptian Academy of Scientific Research and Technology.

Rome, Italy, 25-26th July 2011
Kick-off Meeting of the MATS Project
news1The Kick-off Meeting of the MATS Project, has been organized in Rome at ENEA's Headquarter with the participation of the representative of the Italian and Egyptian Governments, the representative of the European Commission in the person of the MATS projects Officer Dr. Pietro Menna, all the MATS Project Partners and Sponsor, and the Press.
The day after (26th July 2012) the meeting has been held at the ENEA-Casaccia Research Center. This second day of the meeting has been dedicated to the presentation of the Renewable Sources Technical Unit and CSP activities and to a visit to ENEA-Casaccia CSP facilities and laboratories.
Bruxelles, Belgium, 19th July 2011
MATS project approved by the European Commission
news1The MATS (Multipurpose Applications by Thermodynamic Solar) project has been approved by European Commission and funded under 7th FP (Seventh Framework Programme). The reference topic is "Demonstration of innovating multipurpose solar plants" (Topic 2.9-1) under call ENERGY 2010. The project has the following Reference No.: 268219. MATS is a 42 Months project, starting on this date (19th July 2011). The total budget is 20,46 million € and EC funding for 11.76 million €. (Cordis)
MATS in Egypt
news1The objective of the proposal is the full scale demonstration of TREBIOS technology through the industrial development, the realization and the experimental operation of a multipurpose facility to be installed in Egypt. The thermal energy produced by this plant will be used as energy source in a desalination unit included in the installation, as well as for district heating and cooling. The use of suitable heat storage systems enhance mismatch of power production from the instantaneous solar radiation availability. These features enable electrical energy production "on demand" and the optimized utilization of captured solar energy by additional loads like desalination units. The integration with a back up gaseous fuel, from biomass or natural one, makes the system flexible and enables continuous power production.


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