Dutch startup Solarduck has launched the first demonstrator project for solar projects at offshore sites in estuaries, natural harbors, and near-shore locations using its floating structure technology.
The first plant using this technology is being installed near IJzendoorn, a village in the province of Gelderland, on inshore waters of the Waal (Rhine), the Netherlands’ widest river.
The 65 kW floating array will be connected to a 10 kW electrolyzer that will generate hydrogen, according to the company. The pilot project is being developed in collaboration with Voyex, a Dutch hydrogen company that specializes in hydrogen bonded with a liquid organic hydrogen carrier (LOHC), an oil-like liquid that acts as a binding agent.
The company’s basic floating structures are triangular in shape, measuring 16 x 16 x 16 meters, and can be tied together in a variety of ways to create massive megawatt-sized plants. PV modules can be placed more than three meters above the water’s surface using these platforms. According to the business, this configuration allows for the use of standard PV modules with high efficiencies without the need for specially built and more costly items.
The modules for the demonstrator project were provided by Chinese manufacturer Astronergy, and the high-performance polyolefin Endurance backsheets were provided by Dutch materials specialist DSM. The device was put together at Damen Shipyards, a Dutch shipbuilding and engineering conglomerate, with aluminum extrusions supplied by Norsk Hydro Extrusion.