At Innova, our unique solar solutions are paving the way towards significantly improving the environment and benefitting local communities.
Read on to learn more about solar, including how it works, why we need it, and how Innova's solar solutions are creating a positive impact – now, and for the future.
Solar energy is defined as the energy that is given off by a star – in this instance, energy from the sun. This energy is produced via a process called nuclear fusion, and the energy is released in the form of photons. These photons then travel to earth in the form of sunlight and ultraviolet (UV) rays.
A solar farm is a stretch of farmland where ground-mounted solar photovoltaic (PV) panels are installed, usually in rows.
Solar panels create electricity via the photovoltaic (PV) effect. In short, this is the generation of current and voltage in a material (which, in the case of most solar panels today, is silicone) when it is hit by sunlight. Researchers are continually looking at ways to improve the efficiency of solar panels as more and more solar farms are required.
There are several reasons why we need to build solar developments in the UK:
Currently, the majority of the national grid is powered by greenhouse gas emitting energy producers. By contrast, solar developments do not emit any greenhouse gases, and are therefore classed as a clean energy producer.
The more we can make use of solar power, the less greenhouse gasses that will be emitted, and the greater the chances will be for the planet and population to recover from the negative impacts.
Specifically, the UK government has a legally binding target to achieve Net Zero (the balance between greenhouse gases produced and removed from the earth’s atmosphere) by 2050, and has committed to fully decarbonising the national grid by 2035.
As part of this plan, UK businesses are also required by law to achieve these targets. By switching to solar energy, as opposed to fossil fuels, UK businesses will have a much greater chance of achieving this.
According to Electricity Generation Costs 2023 by the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, the lifetime cost of solar energy is £41 per megawatt-hours (MWh) produced, compared to gas turbine plants, which are £114 per megawatt-hours produced. As the solar industry develops more, this gap will widen, with solar expected to cost £37/MWh compared to a gas turbine at £139/MWh.
Solar also benefits from a more secure cost in production, as its fuel is free, whereas the cost of gas fluctuates. In summary, by installing more PV solar projects, the cost of energy will reduce.
By using part of a landowner’s land for a solar development, this provides the landowner with a steady and secure income during the operation of the project. Consequently, this gives them the opportunity to reinvest into their farm and help produce food within the UK.
What’s more, solar developments allow for biodiversity enhancements, helping local wildlife to flourish and leaving land in a better state than before the development was built.
With Innova’s in-house teams of planning, technical, engineering, and construction experts, we develop, build, and operate our own solar assets. This not only gives us complete autonomy throughout the project lifecycle, but empowers us to be at the cutting edge of technology and to keep improving the quality and performance of our sites to achieve an exceptionally positive impact.