Techno-Economic Study of Agrovoltaic Systems Focusing on Orchard Crops
This paper presents a novel 3D agrovoltaic modelling tool developed in python which enables technical and economical evaluation of potential agrovoltaic designs. It has been designed and applied for fruit crops which typically have a crucial flowering period. To illustrate the potential of this tool, a case study for pear trees in Bierbeek, Belgium is shown. While many geometrical parameters of agrovoltaic systems are fixed in practice, however, there is also the need to model the impact of PV modules on the tree light interception. The results of the modelling show that the amount of solar radiation depends on the modules used, with semi-transparent modules offering better light distribution and reduced crop loss. Based on the modelling, a prototype agrovoltaic set-up with pear trees and semitransparent modules has been built in Bierbeek, Belgium.