Australian-first floating solar system in SA

The floating solar system was installed by Infratech Industries at the Northern Areas Council Wastewater Treatment Plant.

The floating solar system was installed by Infratech Industries at the Northern Areas Council Wastewater Treatment Plant.

By Courtney Pearson

May 4, 2015

IN an Australian first, a national company has unveiled a floating solar system that will generate about 57 per cent more power than its land-based counterparts.

Infratech Industries launched the innovative $12 million system at the Northern Areas Council Wastewater Treatment Plant in South Australia, which is expected to power the plant as well as surrounding communities and council buildings.

Infratech Industries director Felicia Whiting said the system has a number of benefits.

“Blue-green algae is a major concern for wastewater treatment plants and the shade produced by the floating solar panels combats this problem by limiting the photosynthesis process,” she said.

“The energy goes into the panels, not the water, so the surface stays cool which helps to lift the quality of treated wastewater.”

Furthermore, the Northern Areas Council will save about 15 per cent on energy expenditure and a 1 per cent margin on the excess energy provided to the local community, Infratech Industries stated.

More than 15 engineers and research scientists from Adelaide’s Flinders University were involved in the technological and engineering development.

Solar Citizens national director Claire O’Rourke said it was incredible to see companies embracing the “solar revolution”.

“It shows that inspiring and innovative projects can become reality when state governments provide solar businesses with a supportive policy environment,” she said.