Photovoltaic Structures for Use in Agriculture Farms

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Researchers at Purdue University have developed new photovoltaic (PV) structures for agrivoltaic farming. These structures can simultaneously be used for growing food and generating electricity. Shadows from current PV modules decrease corn, rice, and wheat yields, and the modules are often expensive . The solar powered devices and design software created at Purdue can optimize food production for farmers while maximizing PV energy production. This PV setup can be implemented for full-scale farming utilizing current farm equipment and is designed with row crops such as corn, soybeans, wheat, and rice in mind. Further, the ideal dimensions and lower height of the new PV structures enable dynamic changes between light and shadow as desired.

-Low cost PV systems for agriculture farms
-Lower height PV structures
-Maximizes land space use for agriculture crops
-Provides increased food production
-Systems adjust upon rain, approaching equipment

-Electric Utility
-Renewable Energy

Technology Validation: The dimensions of the new PV structures have been fine-tuned to allow sunlight, rain, and shadows to reach plants as needed. In addition, the new PV modules were found to withstand harsh weather conditions like rain or wind.

Recent Publication:
"Sustainable Co-Production of Food and Solar Power to Relax Land-Use Constraints"
Nature Sustainability
DOI: 10.1038/s41893-019-0388-x
Sep 13, 2021
CIP-Gov. Funding
United States

Nov 13, 2020
Provisional-Gov. Funding
United States
Purdue Office of Technology Commercialization
The Convergence Center
101 Foundry Drive, Suite 2500
West Lafayette, IN 47906

Phone: (765) 588-3475
Fax: (765) 463-3486