Floating solar has already today been installed in a quantity of ~2.4GWp and is creating major opportunities to scale up solar energy production around the world. According to a report from the World Bank, the global potential of floating solar, even under moderate assumptions, is 2000 GWp on man-made reservoirs alone. Adding opportunities on near shore, rivers, larger lakes and other locations so far not feasible for current mainstream floating solar technology; the potential becomes enormous! Due to Ocean Sun’s patented technology and its many benefits a substantial share of future installations will be on our platform.
Our design is inspired by nature. The giant water lilly, Victoria Amazonica, sits on the water surface just like our floater. Both are anchored to the seabed. Both thrive in the sunlight. Plant cells versus solar cells. Photosynthesis versus photovoltaics.
A thin polymer membrane is used to carry the PV modules. This gives the minimum use of materials to achieve the required buoyancy. The amount of materials is what determines the lowest theoretical cost of a floating PV installation, which greatly affects the levelized cost of energy.
Using Ocean Sun’s patented solution, the operating cell temperature is lowered through direct heat transfer from the water below, which in turn improves the efficiency of the solar modules. To prove this Ocean Sun is carrying our third-party validations of its system in collaboration with DNVGL. As the infrared picture shows, modules installed using Ocean Sun’s solution is kept at much lower temperatures.
WIND AND WAVE RESISTANT
Ocean Sun’s system has, as the first floating PV systems, received a Statement of Conformity from DNVGL Maritime, validating the Design Premise and the structural integrity in waves, wind and currents. By using a thin membrane Ocean Sun’s system is hydro-elastic. This property allows the structure and the PV modules to move gracefully with the harmonics of the waves, as opposed to working against the forces from the waves. Basin tests and simulations have predicted the systems wave capabilities and Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis has shown that the system is able to withstand typhoon category 4 winds of 275 km/h.
EASY TO INSTALL
The membrane itself is walkable when installed on water and mounting the PV modules is fast and easy due to the design of the membrane and the customized modules.
Due to the material efficiency of the system the material logistics is significantly reduced compared to other floating PV systems. The membrane for our CF 550 floater fits in one 40ft container.
The floaters will reduce evaporation, which is a growing concern in many warm and dry geographical areas. In addition the floaters also reduce the underwater sunlight exposure which can mitigate problems of algae growth that can be a concern on certain locations.