Offshore solar platform launched in the Belgian North Sea
The SeaVolt consortium, which comprises the companies Tractebel, DEME and Jan De Nul, has very accurately transported and installed the first offshore solar test platform in the Belgian North Sea.
The offshore solar platform is specifically tailored to the conditions of the rough sea, and its modular design makes it ideal for deployment in offshore wind farms to complement existing wind turbines.
This proof-of-concept installation will collect a lot of useful data on the impact of waves, rain and salt spray on various solar panels with different solar panel configurations.
Moreover, the impact of different inclinations on energy production (due to waves and wind) as well as the potential ecological impact of the platform will be monitored closely.
Since the installed platform is only equipped with a few solar panels for a fairly large float structure, it should not be seen as a first full-scale prototype; rather, it is a laboratory for acquiring knowledge and assessing technological design and functions.
The test platform is expected to help accelerate the large-scale development of offshore solar energy, and the SeaVolt consortium will conduct tests on the open sea throughout the year to collect data for further development of the technology.
The test platform was developed within the scope of the MPVAqua research project, one of the first projects facilitated by Blue Cluster. In 2021, the project was awarded the Blue Innovation Swell Award.
Seavolt is a partnership between TRACTEBEL, DEME and Jan De Nul. The partners will collaborate closely with Ghent University and POM West Flanders to further test the installation for the duration of one year.