Tuesday, 01 Mar, 2011 Environment
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AQUASUN - New System of Solar Panels Mounted on Bodies of Water

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Today a lot of environmentally-conscious companies decide to install solar panels to harness solar energy. However, in order to generate a large amount of solar power it is required to have a large number of solar panels, obviously, which in its turn needs a lot of space. The latter is one of the main problems linked with solar energy, which is why two tech companies from Israel and France came up with the idea to mount solar panels on the surface of the existing bodies of water.

The project is called AQUASUN and it's the result of cooperation between Solaris Energy, a company from Israel, and EDF Group, a firm based in France.

The solar panels used in the project make use of silicon cells, which makes them rather inexpensive. Due to the fact that panels that use silicon cells can become inefficient because of overheating, their placement on the water solves the problem. In AQUASUN researchers decided to use mirrors that concentrate the rays of the sun onto the solar panels, thus considerably increasing their efficiency and cutting the number of panels required, which in its turn leads to a reduction in costs.

It was reported that each modular panel can generate 200 kW of power. The system would be mounted on reservoirs that are used for industrial and agriculture purposes rather than on the open ocean.

The solar panels used in the system are designed in a way to allow oxygen penetrate through them, thus preventing the water underneath them from becoming stagnant.

The companies have already managed to build a prototype of their system and carried out an official presentation at the 4th International Eilat-Eilot Renewable Energy Conference that took place in Israel, reports Gizmag.

The prototype is expected to be tested in southeast France this September, with the trials being carried out for 9 months.

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