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    In addition to offshore wind farms, solar panel farms may soon be coming to the sea

    March 13, 2023 - BusinessAM


      Copyright BusinessAMBE

      Listen to the full interview here.

      Three major parties, Jan De Nul, Deme and Tracetebel, are working on a test rig for solar panels at sea. Business AM spoke about the project with Tine Boon, Head of Offshore at Tractebel.

      Belgium is in the midst of an . However, this requires a large surface area. For this reason, wind turbines have been built at sea for some time. But now other options are also being explored.

      The gist: The three parties are going to test whether the technology works properly, Boon says.

      • "We are going to test off the coast of Ostend ... what we are doing is mainly developing a way to make solar at sea possible." This is a project on the high seas, which will be about 20 to 30 kilometers off the coast. They are developing a float to hold the panels high enough above the sea.
      • "With the test rig, we want to see if the float we have developed behaves as we foresee," he said. Indeed, there are a number of challenges to overcome. The parties chose to keep panels "high and dry" so that they will not be affected by seawater. In projects where reservoirs are covered, this is not necessary and the panels are .
      • As a result, no new panels have to be developed, Boon says. In this way, it becomes possible to "float along" on the existing solar panel market, so to speak. In this way, the parties want to develop the project in a cost-efficient way.
      • In the meantime, some tests have already been carried out, first in the lab, then in the wind tunnel. The next step is to conduct a test at sea.



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