This article by Erica Goode from the New York Times that touches on some new developments in solar energy. 50,904 solar panels will be installed in the Yamakura Dam reservoir, in Japan. They will float atop the water generating approximately 16,170-megawatt hours of electricity a year. That is enough energy to power almost 5,000 homes. The model of building solar panels to float on water has recently become popular. One company even coined the term “floatovoltaics” to describe the solar arrays. The advantages of installing solar arrays on water include fewer regulations on the building of the panels and reduction in the cost of owning or renting property. The “floatovoltaics” are also out of the way so citizens won’t complain about their views being distorted. The water cools the panels, and the panels help reduce evaporation and algae blooms. Challenges include harsher wind conditions than on land and convincing government water agencies to allow the projects.
“The panels are specially coated to prevent corrosion, and set on a tracking system that moves them to maximize sunlight during a day. The company is working on a similar project in Holtville, a small city in Southern California, which has suffered from years of drought.”
Check out the rest of the article below: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/24/science/solar-power-floating-on-water.html?_r=0