A technical and economic evaluation of floating photovoltaic systems in the context of the water-energy nexus

Nabil A.S. Elminshawy*, Amr Osama, Antonio Gagliano, Erkan Oterkus, Giuseppe Marco Tina

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Energy and water scarcity are increasingly global challenges that should be addressed collaboratively. Accordingly, floating photovoltaic systems (FPV), which are mounted on the water's surface, are gaining global acceptance. This system offers several unique benefits over land-based ones, including land preservation, water saving, and enhancing system efficiency. This research seeks to experimentally assess and compare the performance of the FPV with those of a conventional land-based system (LPV) in a Mediterranean climate. To that aim, both the FPV and the LPV are analyzed in terms of electrical and thermal performance, evaporation mitigation, environmental and economic considerations at varied module tilt angles (10°, 15°, 20°, and 30°). The findings reveal that adjusting the FPV tilt to 10° reduces the module temperature by 7.24 °C, leading to a 16 % reduction compared to LPV due to the water surface proximity. The FPV deployment at a tilt of 10° reduced the evaporation by 83.33 %. The FPV surpasses the LPV installed at a tilt angle of 20° by 8.92 % in power generation. It's confirmed that the FPV system produces electricity with a LCOE of 0.059 $/kWh with the potential of saving 2.19 m3/m2 of water vapor annually, which mitigates 5.20 kg of CO2/m2/year.
Original languageEnglish
Article number131904
Number of pages14
JournalEnergy
Volume303
Early online date8 Jun 2024
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 8 Jun 2024

Keywords

  • Photovoltaic
  • floating system
  • cooling
  • co-benefits
  • water conservation
  • evaporation

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