Solar farms are large scale solar installations of photovoltaic (PV) panels, referred to as solar panels. Unpaved roads line the rows of solar panels. These roads produce high quantities of dust. Poor solar farm dust control can hurt profit margins, damage equipment, and lead to health and safety issues.
Access Roads Cause Dirty Solar Panels
Unpaved access roads on solar farms are made of soil particles that are loosely bound together. In between these soil particles are air pockets. The soil particles become loose and are taken into the atmosphere by the wind, becoming dust. The dust becomes fugitive dirt that can build up on panels on the solar farm.
The Price of Dirty Solar Panels
When dust coats solar panels with a layer of dirt, it blocks the sun from being absorbed. Dirty solar panels don’t produce as much energy. Studies have shown that energy loss may range as high as 25% in some areas. Dirty solar panels lead to less electricity and revenue for solar farms.
Dust Increases Costs
Dust can have extreme effects on solar farm operations. Short term dust control solutions like water or chlorides can lead to added costs from constant reapplication, equipment, and labor. Dust particles can cause damage to vehicles and equipment. Dust control methods can significantly reduce these unforeseen expenses.
Short Term Dust Control Methods Don’t Work
Water and chlorides are often used as temporary dust suppressants. However, water must be applied frequently to unpaved roads to maintain adequate moisture. Additionally, chlorides can be corrosive to equipment. These dust control methods lead to higher costs.
How to Reduce Power Loss
Solar farm dust control methods are needed to keep solar panels clean. Dust control products can eliminate dust build-up on solar panels. Long-lasting dust control products, such as polymer alternatives, leads to clean solar panels that provide more power per unit and reduce cleaning efforts and costs.
Dust Control Solution for Solar Farms
Long-lasting dust control products such as the Envirotac line of polymers offer a durable and cost-saving solution for solar farms. Envirotac products are non-corrosive to equipment and solar panels. They do not require constant reapplication and keep areas dust free and fugitive dirt off of solar panels.
Environmental Products & Applications, Inc. can help save you time, money, and provide peace-of-mind on your solar farm. Contact us to find out how Envirotac can help reduce the costly problems caused by dust.