BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — Though the concept has been around for hundreds of years, concentrated solar-thermal power is just now beginning to gain more attention on a worldwide level.

But what exactly is this type of energy?

These solar panels collect energy from the sun and turn it into electricity through heat-powered turbines, rather than just using its light.

North Dakota researchers say our state has the capacity to produce the highest level of solar power out of all the states along the Canadian border. And with our long summer days, we could produce more solar power than states such as Texas or Florida.

Energy experts say, that in places, like North Dakota, this technology can provide an efficient and cost-effective source of energy.

“We’re learning lessons,” said Solar Energy Technical Advisor David Haas. “What we’re trying to do is increase the efficiency, drive down the cost, paving the path for tomorrow’s energy needs.”

One common use of solar power in our state is for powering water pumps in pastures. However, our state is looking to expand on this.