MarineSPOTS provides a scientific basis for the rollout of solar energy at sea. The partners model conditions such as waves and storms, and conduct research into adapted solar panels, floating structures and electrical systems. The impact on the marine ecology is also taken into consideration.
Nov 2021 - Oct 2023
DBC as an observer, National project

Floating solar panels can make a significant contribution to the energy transition. Over the past few years, a large number of systems for lakes and reservoirs have been developed and have become operational, but such installations are not suited for a marine environment. The reason is that solar panels are not just exposed to waves and wind, but there is also a higher risk of corrosion and fouling.

At present, a wide range of concepts of photovoltaic solar panels floating at sea are investigated, developed and tested in Belgium and abroad. Within this scope, the MarineSPOTS (Marine Solar Potential and Technology Study) project partners conduct research into various aspects of such panels, including:

  • The impact of waves, temperature, wind and fouling on energy production;
  • The optimum mechanical structure of offshore solar panels;
  • The choice of components and electrical architecture;
  • Connection to the power grid;
  • The impact on the environment.

On this basis, the project partners attempt to create a clear picture of the potential of offshore solar panels in the Belgian part of the North Sea, and make relevant recommendations.

Partners: EnergyVille (KU Leuven, imec & UHasselt) and the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences (RBINS)

With the support of: Energy Transition Fund

Contact: Stefaan Mensaert

Blue Cluster acts as an observer in the advisory board of this project.

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