The floating solar power plants located in the Alpine mountains generate 50% more energy than similar solar power plants located in the lowlands.
The results were obtained in the course of research carried out by the team of the Swiss energy company Romande Energie. The solar stations in the mountains of the Valais canton are located at an altitude of 1.8 km above sea level. They consist of over thirty floating barges and over 2000 sq. m of solar panels. Annually, this SPP produces about 800,000 kW * hour of electricity – this amount is quite enough to cover the needs of almost 230 households in electricity. The energy generation efficiency of such a high-altitude installation is 1.5 times higher than those located at lower levels. This is due to the fact that at higher altitudes the radiation of the solar flux is more powerful. In addition, the snow covering the tops of the mountains is an additional emitter – effectively repels the sun’s rays falling on it onto nearby panels.
According to the information portal E2nergy, the project is currently at the stage of two-year adaptation. The developers investigate the efficiency of its operation and make an informed decision – whether the installation will work as productively in other conditions, whether it is worth implementing it on a larger scale in other high-mountain reservoirs in the world.