The UK now has its first floating solar farm, thanks to the recent completion of a 200 kw solar array at a farm in Berkshire.
The new floating solar array is located on a reservoir at Sheeplands Farm near Wargrave. The system is expected to result in a return on the initial £250,000 investment within only 6 years — with the energy produced after that being essentially “free,” or generating a lot of cash for the owners, depending on how you look at it.
The solar array will also, of course, help the business reduce its carbon emissions and footprint.
BusinessGreen provides more:
Advocates of floating solar farms argue they can address concerns that solar farms could use up valuable agricultural land while also delivering higher levels of conversion efficiency than standard solar farms, thanks to the cooling effect of the water.
Owner Mark Bennett told the Telegraph that he was now hoping to roll the technology out to water companies and reservoirs. “We are speaking to big utility companies, to agricultural companies — anyone with an unused body of water. The potential is remarkable,” he said.
The France-based technology developer Ciel & Terre is reportedly currently working with Bennett to expand the use of the “innovative” solar energy solution to other parts of the UK.
On that note, Japan is currently still in the process of developing what will be the world’s largest floating solar farm when completed. Kyocera recently revealed that it was partnering with Century Tokyo Leasing Corp to develop two new floating solar arrays — one with a capacity of 1.7 MW and one with a capacity of 1.2 MW.
Image Credit: Floating Solar UK