Floating photovoltaic (FPV) technology is emerging from sheltered water to the open seas, where the rough waves would generate complex dynamic responses in the system composed by FPV arrays and might have perceptible effect on power generation efficiency. This influence is complex, not only in terms of the variation in irradiance received by FPV panels due to the variation in the tilt and azimuth angle of the photovoltaic panels per second, but also in terms of the mismatch losses due to the uneven irradiation of the modules connected in series between the arrays. Accurately assessing the coupling effect of wave loadings and power output is fundamental to the design of FPV systems. In this study, a numerical modelling methodology is developed to obtain the motion responses of waves on FPV systems, investigate the performance and loss percentage for each month, as well as the daily loss variation and conduct a detailed analysis of the impact of wave steepness on power losses under different wave conditions. The results indicate that colder seasons and more severe sea conditions will result in greater losses for the PV arrays. The mismatch phenomenon is more significant in medium to high sea conditions. Furthermore, there is an exponential relationship between wave steepness and the efficiency loss of the FPV system, with greater wave steepness resulting in more efficiency loss. This study provides a simulation methodology to assess the wave induced losses of offshore FPV system. It could be used to improve FPV system's structural design based on the power efficiency optimization.


Floating Photovoltaic (FPV) is an emerging technology that is favored by investors for its superior performance to with a value of USD 30.16 million in 2021 and a compound annual growth rate of 22.5 expected from 2022 to 2030(Grand View Research, 2022). Current FPV systems are mostly installed in sheltered, in-land water bodies like lakes, irrigation reservoirs, mine lakes, dam lakes, etc(Friel et al., 2019). The ocean offers a large unused cold-water surface and an abundance of solar energy, which make it an ideal location for FPV installations. However, only a few ongoing demonstration projects are being deployed worldwide(Kumar et al., 2021). As a new and promising concept, offshore FPV systems have many unknowns, especially how FPV systems perform in offshore locations where environmental and climatic issues are severe.

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