A team of German industrial researchers says concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) systems that focus light on to solar cells can provide an effective alternative for powering remote irrigation networks.
CPV systems can also help power other system far removed from developed electric grids.
In hot, dry climates like Egypt’s, the pumps needed to tap deep water reserves are typically powered by diesel generators.
But the CPV systems were able to run a 105-foot-deep pump and desalination unit, as well as other equipment.
That system monitors energy production and needs at the wheat field in real time so the electricity can be routed more efficiently. A small reserve is still kept to power the CPV system’s own sun tracking system.
That system is necessary because CPV systems have to be accurately aligned with sunlight.
As the sun moves across the sky throughout the day, the CPV systems continue to follow the sun so they can focus as much light through a special lens that concentrates it onto collection cells.