Spotlight: Alqueva Dam FPV

The newly constructed 5 MW FPV park, in Alqueva, Portugal, is a one of a kind.

From the Seaflex elastic mooring system to the cork-recycled plastic floaters, several novel components and solutions used in this project – with near 12,000 panels over an area of 4 hectares – have been developed to address the many environmental challenges found in dam settings, ensuring minimal impact. These innovations along with their associated record setting low cost (LCOE), allows for FPV on hydro-electric dams to not only be technically feasible but also profitable.

With depths up to 70 meters, 20+ meters of water level variation, over 1-meter waves, and storm winds gusting over 30 m/s locations like these pose significant challenges to designing FPV parks for 25+ year lifespans. Therefore, industry experts from Seaflex and Rise in Sweden, Isigenere in Spain, Wavec and EDP in Portugal came together with the help of the FRESHER EU project funded by EMFF (European Maritime & Fisheries Fund) to design and construct the safest, most advanced, and cost-effective FPV solution to date.

Specific challenges in many hydro-electric dams involve deep water, significant water level variation, waves, and often strong winds. Mooring and anchoring solutions for such an environment need not only state-of-the-art material, but innovative optimizations between anchors, mooring lines, floats and modules. Seaflex AB, a widely recognized, 40+ year Swedish company, that has introduced the elastic mooring solution to the world market, has designed and supplied such the mooring system for the project. In conjunction with FRESHER EU, Seaflex has accomplished a remarkable over 50% lowering of cost (LCOE) for the mooring solution, while also increasing the safety, longevity, and performance. These innovations and associated cost reduction have helped to pave the way for hydro FPV endeavors like the recent Portuguese solar auction, and other similar developments around the world. Seaflex is currently incorporating this knowledge and accompanying solutions into upcoming utility scale FPV commercial projects, standards for the FPV industry, and governmental agencies.

For more information about how these Seaflex elastic mooring innovations can lower costs, increase safety, and overcome environmental challenges in all FPV projects please contact us.

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