Daylight to power crops: Maximizing solar energy in irrigation villages.

By Oliver Townsend Jul 3, 2024
From daytime irrigation to selling surplus energy: Optimizing the use of solar energy in irrigation communities.jpegOrginal image from: https://techxplore.com/news/2024-07-daytime-irrigation-surplus-energy-optimizing.html

Optimizing the use of solar energy in irrigation communities presents a promising path towards sustainability, both environmentally and economically. One such example is the Lower Guadalquivir Valley Irrigation Community, which has embraced self-supplying through solar energy. This community has installed a 6-megawatt photovoltaic plant, marking a significant step towards a more sustainable irrigation model. Collaborating with research groups, the community aims to maximize the use of solar energy, prevent surplus loss, and reduce dependence on external energy sources.

Daytime Irrigation: A Paradigm Shift

The traditional practice of nighttime irrigation in the Lower Valley Community is undergoing a transformation. With the increased production of solar energy, a shift towards daytime irrigation is proposed to align with energy availability. This change in strategy aims to optimize solar energy utilization, reduce energy costs, and enhance water efficiency through drip irrigation methods. By concentrating irrigation during daylight hours, the community can harness the power of solar energy more effectively.

Selling Surplus Energy: Economic Considerations

As the solar energy production increases, the Lower Valley Community is exploring the option of selling surplus energy. However, the competitive market has led to reduced profitability in this endeavor. While there is no foolproof solution for fully exploiting solar energy, the community’s experience and ongoing research offer valuable insights. By combining environmental sustainability with economic viability, the community sets the stage for the irrigation practices of the future.

Strategies for Sustainable Solar Energy Use

Research and collaboration are key drivers in optimizing the use of solar energy in irrigation communities. By adapting irrigation schedules, leveraging solar energy during the day, and exploring economic opportunities, communities can pave the way for a more sustainable future. The integration of solar energy into irrigation practices not only reduces environmental impact but also offers economic benefits, creating a win-win scenario for agricultural communities.

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