Floating PV installed in Oostende harbor
Floating PV is an important component of a strategy for efficient land management in the energy transition. Especially on bodies of water, there is a lot of unused space with strong solar incidence without shading. However, there are high technical demands on the system due to erosion and wave action.
In the port of Oostende, Belgium, the French startup HelioRec installed a floating off-grid PV system with a new type of floater in early January 2022. This so-called “hydro-lock” is partly filled with water, which makes the photovoltaic power plant particularly resistant to wave movements by filling. As a result, the floater gives the PV plant a high degree of stability on the water surface without the need for additional, expensive weighting material. According to Polina Vasilenko, founder and CEO of HelioRec, the PV system is designed to withstand waves of up to 2 meters.
The project was carried out as part of the EU-funded DualPorts initiative in cooperation with Swedish company Greenpipe International.
With an installed capacity of 10 kWp, the system is an example of the application of floating PV on a small scale, with the electricity generated initially to be used directly on site at the Port of Oostende's warehouse. In the future, the pilot project aims to use waste plastic in the floaters of the floating PV systems to contribute to a sustainable circular energy economy.
Offshore-energy, article by Amir Garanovic (1/25/2022):
https://www.offshore-energy.biz/heliorec-installs-floating-solar-pilot-in-belgian-port/, last access 1/26/2022 at 7:45 a.m.
pv-magazine, article by Emiliano Bellini (1/7/2022):
https://www.pv-magazine.com/2022/01/07/new-tech-to-reduce-mechanical-stress-in-floating-pv-arrays/, last access 1/26/2022 at 8:10 a.m.