GreenVolts Sets Sights on Solar for Agriculture

GreenVolts, which has raised $120 million to commercialize its concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) technology, is setting its sights on the agriculture industry.

Using solar energy for agriculture is a large, untapped opportunity, they say. Agricultural businesses, which have plenty of land and sun, are ideal for solar, and are very interested in       lowering their electricity costs, which can exceed 20% of       production costs.   

Greenvolts will partner with Independent Solar Developers, which specializes in turnkey solar systems for southern California agricultural applications.       

The partners will offer turnkey systems that includes energy analysis, load patterns, operations, maintenance and financing, which is the primary barrier for most projects. They’ve developed tailored solutions for irrigation, cattle, food processing, and other agricultural applications.   

The modular design can be configured for distributed loads, such as irrigation pumps located on different parcels of land, or scaled up to meet higher demand, such as refrigeration in the processing of vegetables. ISIS, the energy management software included with the system, allows remote monitoring and management of all the systems from anywhere on the Internet.   

In 2009, Greenvolts received $500,000 to work with National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) to commercialize an advanced solar cell design.

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