Smart cities are becoming more and more important and are popping up worldwide. Most of these smart cities develop and use smart technologies to create a better environment. An example of this is Tuscan, Arizona.
In Tuscan, Arizona, a mirror-making technology aims to produce solar electricity. The Department of energy gave $1.5 million to researchers of the University of Arizona campus to improve this mirror-making technology they’ve developed. They want to be able to provide the solar electricity their technology produces to consumers at a price which is competitive with non-renewable energy sources.
Their system is actually an empty swimming pool with a house-sized frame a crisscrossing steel tubes referred to as the tracker mounted onto a swiveling post in the concrete bottom of the pool. The trackers support two curved, highly reflective glass mirrors, each measuring 10 feet by 10 feet.
Roger Angel, Regent’s professor of Astronomy and Optical Sciences and director of the Steward Observatory Mirror Lab said that they developed this mirror-making technology to make highly concentrating solar mirrors. He said that their technology holds the promise of getting the price of solar energy down to where it can be used on a large scale without depending on subsidies, so they can be competitive in the electricity market.