Steve Gillman for Horizon: Rising populations and climate change are putting pressure on the water needed for agriculture but a solar-powered irrigation system may reduce the amount that farmers use - while simultaneously slashing the sector's greenhouse gas emissions.
Fran Ryan for The Recoder: The farm at the University of Massachusetts Crop and Animal Research and Education Center on North River Road in South Deerfield is offering proof that solar arrays and agriculture don't have to be at odds, but can actually exist together within the same field.
The addition of energy storage to an existing or new utility-scale PV installation allows system owners and operators the opportunity to capture additional revenues. Traditional storage plus solar applications have involved the coupling of independent storage and PV inverters at an AC bus or the use of multi-input hybrid inverters. An alternative approach - coupling energy storage to PV arrays with a DC-to-DC converter - can help maximize production and profits for existing and new utility-scale installations. DC-Coupled Utility-Scale Solar Plus Storage leads to higher round-trip efficiencies and lower cost of integration with existing PV arrays and at the same time, opens up new revenue streams not possible with traditional AC-coupled storage, including clipping recapture and low voltage harvesting, while being eligible for valuable tax incentives.