TNO to investigate the effects of wind turbine shade on solar parks

Haringvliet energy park is Vattenfall's first hybrid park. It consists of six wind turbines, 115,000 solar panels and 12 containers with batteries.

Solar parks and wind parks are being combined at an increasing number of locations. A disadvantage of this combination is that the solar panels may be subjected to the shade of the wind turbines. »Little is known as yet about how this affects the solar park performance«, says the Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research (TNO, Organisatie voor Toegepast Natuurwetenschappelijk Onderzoek). Together with the Dutch companies Heliox, Zwanendal and Solarfields and Swedish utility Vattenfall, TNO will investigate the effects of shade on the energy yield of solar parks.
»Ideally, the wind turbines should be on the north side of the plot and the solar panels on the south side,« says TNO researcher Nico Dekker. However, this is not always possible, resulting in shade from the wind turbines on the solar panels. »We distinguish on the one hand the slowly moving shadow caused by the turbine tower and on the other hand the dynamic, rapidly moving shadow caused by the turbine blades.« The slowly moving shadow can be incorporated into the design. Relatively little is known about the dynamic, rapidly moving shadow.
TNO will conduct detailed high-frequency measurements at operational solar parks. Based on the findings, the consortium will draft recommendations on the application of power electronics and on the design and operation of combined solar and wind farms. The aim is to maximize the energy yield and limit the stresses on and failures of electrical components. The research project will run until the end of October 2022.

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