The EU-funded REGACE project is receiving special attention in SolarPower Europe’s Agrisolar Best Practice Guideline’s second volume, released during the recent annual Intersolar Europe Conference, held in Munich on June 13-14 2023, in a chapter focusing on innovations and new trends in agrivoltaics, also called agricultural photovoltaics (Agri-PV).
In the guidelines, SolarPower Europe showcases the “radical innovative technology” REGACE and sees it as a project that will demonstrate “Agri-PV’s potential to become a major contributor to the EU clean energy portfolio.”
“The REGACE solution will be highly competitive compared to other solutions, as it will fully address the desired destination impact of clean, affordable energy. The system demonstrated in this project will also be cost effective in areas with less sunshine,” according to the guidelines.
REGACE’s core technology is a responsive tracking system mounted on agricultural greenhouses, driven by a programmable logic controller (PLC) that changes the angle of the photovoltaic (PV) cells according to the plant’s needs, while using CO2 enrichment to help the plants and panels share the sunlight and land surface area more efficiently, thereby increasing energy production.
“In addition to the economic impact, this will also lead to a significant positive effect on ecological-environmental sustainability and reduced ecological footprint through its life-span maintenance and operation,” the guidelines conclude.
“Public funded research and innovation is key and should be well brought forward to ensure exposure of the good use of public funding in Agri-PV,” said SolarPower Europe’s Policy Advisor for Sustainability, Lina Dubina, noting that a full page is dedicated to REGACE as one of only three agrivoltaics projects currently being funded by the EU through Horizon Europe.
Dubina explained that the Agrisolar Best Practice Guidelines provides a guidance for developing sustainable Agri-PV practices and serving as an informative tool for the Agri-PV sector as a whole.
“With the Agrisolar Best Practice Guidelines, we not only want to promote innovative Agri-PV pilot projects and demonstrators across the EU, but also highlight public funding (such as Horizon Europe) that supports research and innovation in the Agri-PV field,” she said.