The Power of Concentration

Flying into California yesterday I saw something I’ve not seen before: the Ivanpah Solar Power Facility, which focuses the sun’s rays to generate power. I knew it existed but I’ve never seen it before with my own eyes. It is very bright, which is how I noticed it in the first place.

In other news, hello, I am in California, visiting friends and family and then this weekend going to my high school reunion, which is also my high school’s centennial celebration, at which I am also getting an award. Which is pretty neat if you ask me. California is lovely and it is nice to be back, for a few days at least.

— JS

8 Comments on “The Power of Concentration”

  1. Have great time at your HS Reunion!

    I visited the Ivanpah Solar Power Facility some years ago when visiting a friend of mine who lives in Antelope Valley (nearby). It’s a very impressive installation!! From ground level, it looks enormously bigger than it appears from the air. :)


  2. It’s impressive to drive by on a sunny day as well. But it’s rough on the bird population of the area.

  3. I was working as a clerk at Sandia National Laboratories when the Power Tower, the first solar tower that used that “concentration” tech, went online, and I got to go see it happen. Seventy-eight huge mirrors converging the rays of the sun into a single aperture in the tower–and the thing I remember most is seeing a bird fly through the converging reflected rays… and seeing it explode into nothing.

    The Power Tower is still there, more than 40 years later, and I think they still use that solar array.

  4. Dear John,

    This brings back memories of Terry Garey and I driving back from the Phoenix Westercon in 1982 in our faithful VW bus.

    As we passed Barstow, we looked off to the right and WTF?

    It was Solar One in standby mode. Of course I had to stop to make photographs.

    Unreal. It still looks like a matte painting to me. And I vas dere!

    pax / Ctein

  5. welcome to the 21st century…

    …sadly no flying cars nor friendly robots directing the sky traffic

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