The floating solar project is a first for Scotland. Image: Nova Innovations.
The floating solar project is a first for Scotland. Image: Nova Innovations.

Nova Innovation has successfully deployed a floating solar demonstrator in the Port of Leith, Scotland.

Nova Innovation, a tidal energy company, built and installed the Scotland’s first floating project over the summer months. The solar project has already passed a durability test with it having been able to generate electricity throughout Storm Babet, which hit the UK in October.

The floating solar is being used to directly power port operator Forth Ports’ headquarters.

According to solar installer Dynamic SLR, floating solar panels work the same way as land-based systems. However, the inverters and the arrays are affixed on a floating platform. Combiner boxes collect the direct current electricity after generation and then, it is converted into alternating current by solar inverters.

The technology has huge potential globally. Classification society DNV foresees a potential market of 4,000 GW of floating solar capacity. With Nova’s project set to showcase the potential of the emerging technology in Scotland, it could be a means to scale it across the nation and bolster its solar capacity.

“With water covering two thirds of the planet, floating solar technology offers a promising means of harnessing abundant solar energy while preserving valuable land space. We are delighted to have deployed the first floating solar demonstrator at Forth Ports and are already working on larger installations,” said Simon Forrest, CEO of Nova Innovation.

David Webster, director of energy for Forth Ports said: “We are excited to incorporate floating solar into our operations at the Port of Leith. Working with Nova Innovation demonstrates our drive towards progressive change within the maritime industry, as well as supporting our commitment to carbon neutrality by 2032 and achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2042.”