Isaac Kuo wrote:
"This upside-down tree is a powerful demonstration of how combined solar
power and agriculture (agrivoltaic systems) can work. This tree grows
downward in order to avoid direct sunlight. It relies upon light
reflected off facing rock slopes instead. Direct sunlight increases
water consumption due to evaporation.
In a similar way, crops shaded by solar power panels can actually
thrive, because the shade reduces water evaporation.
In the southwestern US, there is an overabundance of sunlight, and the
primary means of installing solar panels is to pack them densely into a
site. Barron-Gafford’s study on the benefits of agrivoltaics does not
change that density, but simply elevates the panels so the crops are
growing in nearly full shade. “What’s super interesting,” he explains,
“is that we can cut back about 75% of the direct sunlight hitting the
plants, but there is still so much diffuse light that makes it under the
panels that the plants grow really well.”
Via @Kam-Yung Soh"
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*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics