Ashleigh AngellSeptember 20, 2018 807 0
The Benefits of Having a Floating Solar System
Floating photovoltaic, or FPV, is a system of solar panels in which a range of panels is placed on a structure that is built to float on a body of water. These systems generally are placed on artificial basins or lakes. By doing this, the restrictions of large cities and lack of farmland are no longer an obstacle, as large bodies of water that are not yet taken up by city life are free to use and build on. This also removes other restrictions that are generally placed on land-based solar panels, such as objects and plants that block out sunlight.
Is there a financial gain to be had by using a floating solar system?
Aside from the general benefits of an FPV system, there are also financial reasons that these types of panels are becoming sought out in the mainstream. For starters, these types of panels have a far greater energy efficiency than their land-based cousins. Because these panels are on top of large bodies of water, they are able to gain the cooling effect from them. These cooling effects are achieved by the natural life-cycle of water, gaining the benefits of evaporation. The other natural cool effect they gain by being built on water is a constant barrage from the wind.
Not only is the energy of these systems more efficient, but another financial incentive for building these kinds of solar systems is the gain from using land that has been previously unused. While before, water reservoirs and dams had nothing placed on them, these panels allow their users to get the full benefits from these areas.
Another advantage to building on something like a dam is that it’s easy to install the panels. Because there are already roads and electrical foundations in place, building a panel system right next to these structures is easier than it would be if it were placed on a roof in the middle of nowhere.
Another financial gain is the benefit of not having to clean and replace the panels nearly as often as land-based ones. Solar panels built on land have the disadvantage of having the wind blowing the land into them. Dirt and soil begin to fill up the crevices in the structures, causing the need to clean them frequently and, in the long run, shortening their lifespan. However, the water-based panels, while also facing some amount of debris, do not get nearly as much of it, and can be cleaned and replaced less frequently, which means more financial gain for the owner in the long run.
Aside from debris, there is also the issue of natural disasters. Wildlife, typhoons, and earthquakes are far less likely to damage a water-based FPV system than if it were built on a home.
Does the FPV system have any added benefits to the environment?
When installing solar systems, many people are doing so because they are trying to be environmentally conscious. The good news about an FPV system is that it does, in fact, have added benefits to our environment. One of these benefits is that if built on a dam, the shadow effect created by the platform is able to reduce the heating of the water. Because of this, less water ends up evaporating and more water is kept inside the dam. Another benefit to the water below, which is also as a result of the shade, is that the water quality itself also improves wherever an FPV system is installed. This is because algae blooms far less, increasing the quality of the water. Some of these systems have also been able to limit erosion and reduce the action of the waves.
Overall, it seems FPV systems are the way of the future when it comes to solar energy.
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