Entries by Anna Adair

The Photovoltaic Heat Island Effect: Larger Solar Power Plants Increase Local Temperatures

This research addresses the concern that photovoltaic systems create a “heat island” effect. Researchers examined the heat island effect with experiments spanning three biomes and found that temperatures over a photovoltaic plant are regularly 3–4°C warmer than wildlands at night, a direct contrast to other studies based on models that suggested that PV systems should decrease ambient temperatures.


Technical Guidance for Utility-Scale Solar Installation and Development on Agricultural, Forested, and Natural Lands

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry presents this technical guide regarding the siting of utility-scale solar projects with consideration for valuable agricultural land, forest resources, and rare or unique natural areas. The guide is intended to provide practical information for those considering solar development on their property, as well as planning important preconstruction, construction, and post-construction/decommissioning activities.

Agrivoltaics: Modeling the relative importance of longwave radiation from solar panel

This article posits that in order to optimize agrivoltaic systems for crop growth, energy pathways must be characterized. While solar panels shade crops, they also emit longwave radiation and partially block the ground from downwelling longwave radiation. The authors suggest that a deeper understanding of the spatial variation in incoming energy would enable controlled allocation of energy in the design of agrivoltaic systems. This paper also presents a model to quantify the downwelling longwave energy at the ground surface in an agrivoltaic array and demonstrates that longwave energy should not be neglected when considering a full energy balance on the soil under solar panels.


Spatial Distribution Model of Solar Radiation for Agrivoltaic Land Use in Fixed PV Plants

When installing photovoltaic panels on agricultural land, one of the most important aspects to consider are the effects of the shadows of the panels on the ground. This study presents a valid methodology to estimate the distribution of solar irradiance in agrivoltaic installations as a function of the photovoltaic installation geometry and the levels of diffuse and direct solar irradiance incident on the crop land.

The Impacts of Agrivoltaics on Crop Production

This PhD dissertation addresses four primary questions: 1.) To what extent is plant-available radiation reduced by solar panels of a photovoltaic system? 2.) How does this effect parameters of aerial and soil climate? 3.) How do the cultivated crops respond to the altered cropping conditions with regard to plant growth and development? 4.) What consequences does this have regarding the yields and the chemical composition of the investigated crop-species? A field experiment in which grass clover, potatoes, celery, and winter wheat were planted under a photovoltaic facility in Southwest Germany was conducted to answer these questions.

Solar, Biodiversity, Land Use: Best Practice Guidelines

This report by SolarPower Europe provides guidelines to support solar industry stakeholders with information about environmental legislation at the EU and European national levels. It also addresses the potential impacts on land use and outlines key actions for suitable land identification for solar PV projects.

Simulation of Crop Yields Grown under Agro-Photovoltaic Panels: A Case Study in Chonnam Province, South Korea

The researchers in this study aimed to simulate crop yields for paddy rice, barley, and soybeans grown under photovoltaic panels with an eye on reaching suitable agricultural productivity for the energy and food nexus coexistence. They also applied a geospatial crop simulation modeling system to stimulate the regional variations in crop yield according to solar […]