By Marek Grzybowski
Sud Renovables, a Spanish subsidiary of the Soltech Group, has installed the company’s first floating solar unit, which is also the first of its kind in Catalonia, Spain. The Scottish company Nova Innovation, which has so far focused on tidal energy, is expanding its offer with the technology of floating solar panels. A set of floating solar panels is due to be installed in Scotland later in 2023.
In April this year Yantai CIMC Raffles Offshore (CIMC Raffles) has launched China’s first offshore floating solar power generation platform. The French start-up SolarinBlue has deployed two floating solar units in the Mediterranean Sea as part of the Sun’Sète project, which aims to supply clean electricity to one of the French ports.
Crist in a sunny project
Crist was invited to produce the unique SYNWATER®/Floating WINDdesal (FWD) system. It is a floating wind farm with solar panels, the energy of which is used to desalinate sea water and produce clean water. The project is also implemented by Thyssenkrupp Industrial Solutions, Prysmian Group, Boll & Kirch Filterbau, AEROVIDE, EMS Maritime Offshore.
On the Polish side, the StoGda Ship Design & Engineering office was involved in the project. The project is implemented with the aim of positioning in countries located on the Arabian Peninsula. We wrote about it in GospodarkaMorska.pl.
Solar Panels on the Chinese sea
Recently, China International Marine Containers (CIMC) Raffles completed a launching and towing operation for a semi-submersible offshore solar platform. It will be operated by CIMC Jiguang Marine Technology (Yantai).
The intellectual property rights of this solution belong to CIMC. It is a set of four floating clusters of solar panels with a total installed capacity of 400 kWp and a total solar energy area of approximately 1,900 m2.
SolarinBlue – Floating Solar panels
SolarinBlue has designed floating solar arrays specifically for use in the marine environment. The first units of the Sun’Sète project were launched in mid-March 2023. The demonstrator was installed in a commercial port, located 1.5 km from the coast, on the site of a former offshore oil unloading station.
The Sun’Sète project in the port of Sète consists of several phases of activity, the first of which involves the installation of two floating units. Then, in the final version, the project will expand to 25 clusters with a total installed capacity of 300 kW and an area of half a hectare.
SolarinBlue technology features a lightweight, eco-friendly design that is 90% recyclable with a treated steel frame and recyclable high-density polyethylene (HDPE) floats.
Nova Innovation Floating solar panels
Scotland’s first set of floating solar panels will be installed this year as part of an innovative project to generate renewable energy and reduce carbon emissions, said Humza Yousaf, Scotland’s first minister, as he toured Nova Innovation’s manufacturing facility in Leith. In laboratory conditions, solar panels are tested before being installed at sea.
In 2016, a Scottish company installed the world’s first offshore tidal turbine in the Shetland Islands. In September 2021, Nova Innovation received £6.4 million (€7.3 million) from the Scottish National Investment Bank to increase production of innovative renewable energy generators. Devices have since been installed in Canada, France and Indonesia.
The company’s floating solar panels have been developed on the basis of state-of-the-art knowledge, with official commissioning later in 2023, with an international multi-megawatt order already in the pipeline, the Scottish government confirmed without revealing any further details.
“These panels provide a fascinating insight into the possibilities of Scotland’s future energy system and are the first step towards realizing our significant floating solar power potential,” said Yousaf during a visit to Nova Innovation.