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Dams that are created to supply a year round reservoir to be used for things like horticulture will have an effective surface area way larger than the reservoir itself - a lot that water that is used for ignition does not end up in plants or sinking into the ground but evaporates fairly soon after it arrives at its destination, presumably hot and arid the rate of evaporation would be vey large, larger than from the surface of reservoir which would be relatively cool.

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I suspect the surface of many lakes will be covered in floating solar panels soon, its a logical place to put them, much more so than on useful land. Especially lakes that have been made for hydro-electric and pumped hydro power generation, because all the electricity infrastructure is already in place.

An arrangement with a big enough lake and enough panels could hold the hydro power generation at a minimum level during the day while the solar panels were generating and run the hydro at max in the night.

Edited by swiss_democracy_for_all
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8 minutes ago, swiss_democracy_for_all said:

I suspect the surface of many lakes will be covered in floating solar panels soon, its a logical place to put them, much more so than on useful land. Especially lakes that have been made for hydro-electric and pumped hydro power generation, because all the electricity infrastructure is already in place.

An arrangement with a big enough lake and enough panels could hold the hydro power generation at a minimum level during the day while the solar panels were generating and run the hydro at max in the night.

How to cripple a country's infrastructure in one fell blow. Take out the hydro and the PV in one go by taking out the dam. 

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8 minutes ago, swiss_democracy_for_all said:

Here's a minor Swiss project, it's going to get bigger, and I guess if there are no major problems will get rolled out across many of the hydro lakes.

https://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/high-energy_floating-solar-panels-unveiled-in-swiss-alps-/45286542

The potential for floating solar on dams is huge and has a number of benefits

  • The cooling effect increases output by around 20%
  • The panel islands can easily be fitted out to track the sun. This adds another 25-30% and means you have optimum power from dawn to dusk
  • The panels reduce evaporation from the reservoir
  • The panels reduce algal growth which makes water easier to treat if its a potable water reservoir
  • Security is better
  • Unless the reservoir is used for other activities there is no loss of land space. 

100m2 of panels  will give about 2MW of capacity. Based on the above about 3.2m kwh a year. 

 

 

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19 minutes ago, swiss_democracy_for_all said:

Here's a minor Swiss project, it's going to get bigger, and I guess if there are no major problems will get rolled out across many of the hydro lakes.

https://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/high-energy_floating-solar-panels-unveiled-in-swiss-alps-/45286542

I thought the swiss were smart? That solar plant is in the shadow of a massive mountain...

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3 minutes ago, Great Guy said:

I thought the swiss were smart? That solar plant is in the shadow of a massive mountain...

That lake runs north south so the panels will pick up the strongest sun throughout the day. The mountains will shave off some early morning / late evening sunshine. 

Just now, MrPin said:

Kurt, you can have the job of cleaning the algae off!

I already have a job

However there are plenty of window lickers on this site that have the transferable skills. 

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26 minutes ago, swiss_democracy_for_all said:

Here's a minor Swiss project, it's going to get bigger, and I guess if there are no major problems will get rolled out across many of the hydro lakes.

https://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/high-energy_floating-solar-panels-unveiled-in-swiss-alps-/45286542

Not just lakes. You could apply this technology to enclosed, calm seas. Caspian, Black and Red Sea come to mind. 

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When I went to the Dead Sea they said the water level was constantly falling... the level of the Dead Sea is 430m below sea level...

Imagine building a hydro plant from the sea to the Dead Sea.... they could have the level in the Dead Sea at any level they wanted and they would get hydro power as well. Fuck it, just flood the whole Dead Sea to normal sea level, that would be awesome.

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12 minutes ago, Kurt Barlow said:

The potential for floating solar on dams is huge and has a number of benefits

  • The cooling effect increases output by around 20%
  • The panel islands can easily be fitted out to track the sun. This adds another 25-30% and means you have optimum power from dawn to dusk
  • The panels reduce evaporation from the reservoir
  • The panels reduce algal growth which makes water easier to treat if its a potable water reservoir
  • Security is better
  • Unless the reservoir is used for other activities there is no loss of land space. 

100m2 of panels  will give about 2MW of capacity. Based on the above about 3.2m kwh a year. 

 

 

Yes, and apparently the Alpine lakes will be even better as the altitude and snow reflection makes the light intensity so much higher that the panels will produce far more than at low altitude.

 

8 minutes ago, Great Guy said:

I thought the swiss were smart? That solar plant is in the shadow of a massive mountain...

Yeah that lake has a mountain on it's west side. It gets sun in the morning and until about 3pm in midwinter, much later in summer.

I'm more interested to know how they'll deal with (say) a metre of snow falling on the panels, which at that altitude (1800m) will happen a few times a year. Maybe they'll have to use a bit of power to heat them when that happens.

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1 minute ago, Great Guy said:

When I went to the Dead Sea they said the water level was constantly falling... the level of the Dead Sea is 430m below sea level...

Imagine building a hydro plant from the sea to the Dead Sea.... they could have the level in the Dead Sea at any level they wanted and they would get hydro power as well. Fuck it, just flood the whole Dead Sea to normal sea level, that would be awesome.

Its been proposed - quite doable but politics gets in the way

The simplest route is the Med to Dead Sea which Israel propose. Jordan wants Red Sea to Dead Sea. Israel suggested they go with the Med route and Israel will give Jordan a % of the electricity but Jordan still objects. 

Israel less interested now since it discovered its gas reserves. 

Similar proposals for the Qattara depression - again died a death at the hand of politics. 

Both these projects would arrest global sea level rise for a couple of years so has an international benefit. 

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Just now, swiss_democracy_for_all said:

Yes, and apparently the Alpine lakes will be even better as the altitude and snow reflection makes the light intensity so much higher that the panels will produce far more than at low altitude.

 

Yeah that lake has a mountain on it's west side. It gets sun in the morning and until about 3pm in midwinter, much later in summer.

I'm more interested to know how they'll deal with (say) a metre of snow falling on the panels, which at that altitude (1800m) will happen a few times a year. Maybe they'll have to use a bit of power to heat them when that happens.

Solar production in  the dead of winter very low anyway so it won't have much effect on year round performance. 

I don't think without complex plumbing or wiring you can produce heat from the panels. 

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8 minutes ago, Kurt Barlow said:

Not just lakes. You could apply this technology to enclosed, calm seas. Caspian, Black and Red Sea come to mind. 

You don't see just the teeniest problem that would cause to the natural environment?

Edited by Frank Hovis
Autocorrected to "trendiest"!
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2 minutes ago, swiss_democracy_for_all said:

Yes, and apparently the Alpine lakes will be even better as the altitude and snow reflection makes the light intensity so much higher that the panels will produce far more than at low altitude.

 

Yeah that lake has a mountain on it's west side. It gets sun in the morning and until about 3pm in midwinter, much later in summer.

I'm more interested to know how they'll deal with (say) a metre of snow falling on the panels, which at that altitude (1800m) will happen a few times a year. Maybe they'll have to use a bit of power to heat them when that happens.

Yes - look at the solar potential in Chile and Tibet. 

 

solar atlas.jpg

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1 minute ago, Frank Hovis said:

You don't see just the teeniest problem that would cause to the natural environment?

Those seas are not particularly productive and the area taken up would be a small fraction of 1%.

Infact floating structures in the water  create floating islands that would attract life like a reef. 

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5 minutes ago, Kurt Barlow said:

Solar production in  the dead of winter very low anyway so it won't have much effect on year round performance. 

I don't think without complex plumbing or wiring you can produce heat from the panels. 

I don't think solar production would be low at 1800m in the Alps in winter, it's incredibly bright in ski stations. Villars-sur-Ollon, for example, a ski station, gets nearly 2000hrs of sun a year, whereas Ollon in the valley, already a sunny place, gets 1750hrs. 

I think they must have some kind of solution for the snow falling on the panels, don't know what though - otherwise a big dump of snow in January would wipe out solar generation until mid April when it would melt. 

This isn't a very encouraging picture though and it's taken there!

image.thumb.png.17aefec75bb8c81b14cc84034dc93cb3.png

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