Thermoclines: A Solar Thermal Energy Resource for Enhanced Hydroelectric Power Production

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Science  12 Jan 1979:
Vol. 203, Issue 4376, pp. 167-168
DOI: 10.1126/science.203.4376.167


The solar thermal energy stored in hydroelectric reservoir thermoclines is very large and greatly exceeds the gravitational hydroenergy of the surface water, even after limitations arising from the second law of thermodynamics have been taken into account. Greatly enhanced power production can be obtained at present hydroelectric facilities if heat engines are adapted to exploit this large thermal energy resource.