Spanish Startup Demonstrates Offshore Floating PV in Harbor

Startup PV NEXUS has launched the Spanish Pilot Project for Floating Photovoltaics at Sea (PVFOILX1-PORTS project) to build the first floating solar prototype in the Port of Valencia. Joan Calabuig, President of the Port Authority of Valencia (PAV), emphasized, “The Port of Valencia will support all this type of innovation, which is a clear step towards decarbonization and an energy transition that can contribute to the port’s energy transition and help us achieve our goal of zero emissions by 2030.”

The PVFOILX1-PORTS project aims to study the initial technical feasibility of a new floating photovoltaic modular system that will obtain clean energy from solar panels mounted on the sea surface.

After months of design, numerical simulation and fabrication at the ETSI Structures Laboratory of the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid Canales y Puertos, the first phase of the experiment has been launched in the waters of the Valencia Marina. For this purpose, a first small prototype with a power of less than 1kWp was installed and remotely monitored through IoT technology.

PV NEXUS highlights the value of developing prototypes in challenging environments, such as seaports, because, in addition to numerical simulations, it allows to draw valuable conclusions and provides guarantees for a favorable implementation in the subsequent pre-commercialization phase.

In this sense, the startup is already studying the possibility of developing new larger-scale pilots, including the potential integration of green hydrogen production, which, thanks to the Port 4.0 program, will open up a wide range of growth possibilities for the project.

The project is part of the Port 4.0 program of the Port of Valencia and the Port of Valencia Foundation. The Port 4.0 Capital Fund is a corporate open innovation model adopted by Puertos del Estado and the Spanish Port Authority in the context of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, aimed at attracting, supporting and promoting the application of talent and entrepreneurship in the Spanish public and private logistics port sector.

The main objective of the fund is to actively promote and incorporate disruptive or incremental innovations as an element of competitiveness, efficiency, sustainability, safety and security in the Spanish public and private logistics port sector, in order to facilitate its transition to a 4.0 economy. Floating photovoltaic solar energy is set to grow strongly in the coming years, and through initiatives such as Ports 4.0, Spain could become a European benchmark.

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