Floating solar farms could cool down lakes threatened by climate change
New research has looked at the potential of floating solar panels on bodies of water as part of the global drive towards green energy - but questions remain.
Giles’ research focuses on floatovoltaics, a form of solar photovoltaics that floats on water bodies. Floatovoltaics technology is relatively new, and up until now, there has been a limited research effort to quantify their effects on water bodies. Water companies are deploying floatovoltaic systems as a means to generate renewable electricity and therefore reduce their carbon-emissions at water treatment works.
Developing a body of research including modelling, in situ monitoring and field and laboratory experiments, Giles is undertaking research that will help unlock the potential for floatovoltaics.
Giles contributed to the organisation of a workshop that brought together key stakeholders involved with floatovoltaics. The workshop discussed the challenges and opportunities of floatovoltaics, informing the future direction of the research body on this topic.
Working in partnership with United Utilities, the North West’s water supplier, Giles is undertaking a project as part of his industrial strategy PhD. As part of a knowledge exchange, he is developing the methods for an investigation into algae occurrence at reservoirs across North West England.
Giles is a joint student representative of the Envision DTP, funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).