Dutch packaging and materials manufacturer, Avery Dennison, has announced the opening of Europe’s largest concentrated solar thermal (CST) platform and storage unit at its factory in Turnhout, Belgium. The new thermal solar energy plant consists of 2,240 surface mirrors and six thermal modules that store energy for continuous operation.
Concentrated solar thermal power utilizes mirrors to concentrate sunlight onto a receiver, which heats a fluid to produce high-temperature steam. The steam drives a turbine, generating electricity. This technology is essential to reducing carbon emissions and transitioning to renewable energy sources in the manufacturing and production sector.
With the manufacturing and production sector responsible for one-fifth of global carbon emissions and a significant energy consumer, manufacturers like Avery Dennison are seeking to cut operational emissions in line with the European Union’s target of achieving net-zero emissions across all industries by 2050. The new installation in Belgium will provide heat equivalent to 2.3GWh of gas consumption, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 9% annually. During the sunnier summer months, the plant is expected to meet up to 100% of the factory’s heating demand.
The majority of the generated heat will be used to operate the factory’s drying ovens, essential for the production of adhesive products. These adhesive products play a crucial role in various industries, including automotive, building and construction, medical devices, and personal care.
The project was made possible through a collaboration with Belgian solar thermal specialists Azteq, Norwegian thermal energy storage firm EnergyNest, and local community group Campina Energie. Funding for the project was secured through the EU’s Horizon 2020 research program, the Flemish Government’s Green Heat initiative, and contributions from the local community.
With Europe’s largest concentrated solar thermal platform now operational, Avery Dennison has taken a significant step towards reducing its carbon footprint and leading the way in sustainable manufacturing practices.
– Avery Dennison
– Campina Energie
– EU’s Horizon 2020 research program
– Flemish Government’s Green Heat initiative