What is meant by floating solars?

Floating solars

Floating solars, as they are often called floatovoltaics or floating photovoltaic (FPV), refer to any solar array which floats on top of a body of water.  Floating solar technology has mainly been installed in countries like Japan, the UK, and China

However, it is also quickly gaining interest in the US for effective sustainability management. This is no surprise when you consider that studies have found floating solar systems on reservoirs alone could generate three times more electricity than the European Union. Continue reading as we dive further into solar energy and its potential to help us achieve a cleaner, greener world. 

What is solar energy and about floating solars

Solar energy is essentially energy from the sun that is converted into electrical or thermal energy. It is the most abundant and cleanest form of renewable energy available. Solar technologies can harness this energy for a wide range of uses from providing light, heating water, generating electricity, and so much more. 

It is an incredibly flexible energy technology. Solar can be built as a central station or as a distributed generation. Both methods can also store the energy they create for distribution once the sun sets, using the latest solar and storage technologies. This kind of energy creates no harmful greenhouse gas emissions. Floating photovoltaics are designed to live afloat bodies of water rather than on land. 

How does solar energy work? 

Solar energy works by transforming energy from the sun into power. We can then use this energy for things like heat and electricity. Solar energy is generated through the use of solar panels, which range in size from solar farms spanning acres of rural land to residential rooftops. Large-scale solar energy production that feeds directly into the grid is the goal of solar farms. 

How much energy does a solar panel produce? 

The majority of residential solar panels are advertised to produce between 250 and 400 watts per hour. According to the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, a home solar PV system sized at 20 square metres and well-located could generate roughly 2,600 kilowatts per hour of electricity annually. 

Advantages of solar energy 

Solar energy has many advantages over other alternative forms of clean energy. It is an energy source that is both inexhaustible and renewable by definition. The sun remains an unchangeable source of energy. Additionally, every part of the planet is exposed to some degree of sunlight, which makes the success of solar energy very achievable. 

Solar energy is also well suited to the electricity grid and batteries. This is because reliable storage systems mean that the energy generated by the sun can be stored even when the sun is not shining. Solar energy is also set to create a lot of employment opportunities for builders, maintenance technicians, developers, installers, and more. 

This form of clean energy is incredibly versatile. Its photovoltaic panels can be used to create thermal energy simply by heating fluids or combining both types in modern thermodynamic solar power plants. There is minimal maintenance required with solar energy, and it remains green until the end of its life. Finally, it has proven to be reliable and durable. 

Floating solars, in particular, offer additional benefits. These panels float above water and research finds they can generate up to 12.5 percent of Ireland’s energy needs, cool down lakes threatened by climate change, serve as a buffer against warming and much more. This underscores the immense potential of solar energy in addressing the climate crisis. 

Disadvantages of solar energy 

While solar energy can bring plenty of benefits to society, it also has some drawbacks you should be aware of. The main one is the high initial cost of installing the panels. Solar energy also does not work for every roof type. However, solar energy is an investment that pays off in the long run and a vital step for us to take to achieve a cleaner world. 


Solar energy is one of the leading solutions to addressing climate change, and over the years, it has achieved significant momentum. We have already witnessed incredible developments in solar energy, particularly with solar farms, rooftop panels and one of the most recent, floating solar panels. It is clear that solar energy has an incredible amount of potential and innovations like floating solar PV systems are an essential pillar in efforts to address the climate crisis

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