Adaptive solar shade system means horticulturalists can smell the roses

Researchers have modeled the effects of various PV module arrangements on a greenhouse used for rose growing in Iran’s Shiraz region. The team determined a ‘sweet spot’ where modules produced the most energy and provided optimal growth conditions for the crop.

Greenhouses are, appropriately enough, a significant contributor to the proportion of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Whether used to grow greens out of their natural season or region, or used in the floristry industry, the energy required for heating, irrigation, and the illumination of plants in greenhouses is the main contributor to the 2% of global energy demand from horticulture. 

Researchers from Iran's Shiraz University and Mälardalen University, in Sweden, have analyzed the effect of covering greenhouses with various configurations of solar panels on energy and water consumption and plant growth. The results were published in the paper Thermo-environomic assessment of an integrated greenhouse with an adjustable solar photovoltaic blind system, which appeared in the academic journal Renewable Energy.

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