L R AS Published on Sunday 18 February 2024 - n° 476 - Categories:agrovoltaic

Is it better to use raised or spaced panels in agrivoltaics?

Investing in spaced panels to make agrivoltaics viable in Portugal would increase yields. The return on investment would be five years. This is the result of

study by the University of Lisbon and the Military Academy.

The mixed use of these natural areas would quadruple the 8 GW of solar energy, or four times its current production capacity. Above all, this would make better use of the space than a single solar power plant or a single farm.

The researchers then studied the installation of panels either on high ground or with panels spaced apart. The latter solution appeared to give the best return.

The researchers also studied the benefits of selling all the energy produced on the market. They installed panels every 20 metres, creating a minimum space of 15 m between the two rows of eight panels each, so for 16 panels; in the second case (high up), the 16 modules were installed in a single row to reduce the shadow cast on the crops below.

The projects were found to have a discounted cost of energy (LCOE) lower than the price of energy on the Iberian market, with payback periods of around 4 to 5 years.


PV Magazine 12 February 2024

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