Installing Solar Systems on the Face of Existing African Dams for Additional Energy Production
Recognizing the issues of land shortage and growing concerns for protecting natural lands, installers, project developers with the help of scientists and engineers try to locate alternative spots for PV-systems installations. In the present paper the authors describe a novel approach, installing PV systems on the outside face of dams. This approach, although currently applied very moderately, has certain advantages that favor even large-scale systems with a capacity of several MWs. In the case of energy-producing hydroelectric dams, the created hybrid system can be notably efficient. The intermittent solar energy will be counterbalanced by hydropower. At the same time, peak demand will be partially covered by PV energy production, ensuring energy availability. Recent research reviewed by the authors has revealed that a notable number of water reservoirs in African continent are under-utilized or don't serve any energy production purpose. That unexploited energy potential apart from being utilized through hydropower development can also be amplified by simultaneous solar system installation. Supplementary power capacity will increase the total energy production and result to economic and environmental benefits.
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