Robots help to increase the efficiency of solar power plants

Today, are increasingly using drones and robots for the construction and operation of solar power plants. The company SunPower is one of the leaders in using this new technology. It is the beginning of construction of its new "oases" of power plants in North America and China.

These large projects using drones for overflights of the territory and data collection. Then all the information is fed to the computers using advanced software to evaluate thousands of designs and make recommendations for best options. This allows project managers to easily compare the potential location of the solar panels and then set up the configuration so that the best use of available space.

Tom Werner, President and CEO of SunPower, said:

"Solar power station "Oasis" can be designed to be 90% faster than the developed conventional solar power plant. While competitors required for flat sections of rectangular shape, and Oasis can be located on a plot of irregular shape with slopes up to ten degrees to generate 60% more energy compared with conventional technology, located in the same area. Every additional ten acres of usable land can give 2 to 4 MW of energy, which could significantly affect the final outcome of the project."

The new system also developed by sucheta needs of agriculture. As solar energy becomes increasingly popular, it is not always easy to find a place under a large area occupied by solar panels. This is one reason that all over the world are built floating solar power plant. The distance between rows of solar panels gives the possibility of carrying out certain agricultural work. SunPower collaborates with the University of California (University of California) in order to find out what crops will grow best in these unusual conditions.

Solar panels typically convert about 20% of solar energy into electricity. But contaminants, such as dirt, dust and bird droppings on the surface of the panels can reduce this figure, and therefore the operator's profit. To overcome these losses, SunPower acquired Greenbotics in 2013, and gained access to robotized systems for cleaning the surface of solar panels. Maintaining a clean surface panels saves high efficiency solar power stations for a long time.

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The robotic system uses 75% less water than cleaning the panels manually. Robots programmed to work at night when they do not interfere with the absorption of sunlight falling on the panel. According to SunPower, the new robotic method is twice faster than existing robotic methods and 10 times faster than the manual cleaning method.published




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