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Well, solar pumping is the same as a traditional pumping system that seeks to extract or propel water to a specific place.
The difference lies in the way of feeding the pump with electricity; usually, this is solved through the electricity grid or with diesel generators, with its corresponding economic cost in electricity or fuel.
For its part, solar pumping consists of pumping water with photovoltaic solar energy, thanks to the use of solar panels and a converter that allows us to use the energy captured by the plates.
Components of a solar pumping system
Solar plates: they are responsible for capturing solar radiation and transforming it into energy for our system; they act as a generator, producing 100% green energy. We must cover at least the nominal power of our pump.
Converter: it is responsible to transform the direct current produced by the solar panels into the suitable alternating current to be used by the pump. It also plays a key role in reading the power available in the photovoltaic panels to regulate the speed of rotation of the pump based on this power to maximize the extraction of water.
Solar pump: it is the machine in charge of the extraction of water and will be dimensioned according to our need for supply. There are multiple types and we must choose the one that best suits the characteristics of our system.
Deposit: this is not a mandatory element of the system, but it can be very useful for our installation since it acts as a “battery”, that is, instead of installing batteries for our generator to continue extracting in the hours without sun, we can take advantage of the hours of light to store the excess water extracted in a tank.
Sizing of direct solar pumping
To start dimensioning our photovoltaic pumping system with a certain guarantee, it will be necessary to know the following data:
- Daily need of water.
- Data of the place of extraction of water.
- Total elevation height.
- Length of the transport pipe and diameter.
- Depositor direct pumping.
- Geographical characteristics of the area.
Advantages of a solar-powered water pumping system
- Energy savings and 100% emissions: as soon as our system goes into operation, our energy expenditure is zero, as we start producing our own 100% green energy
- Maintenance savings: unlike electric fuel generators, this is a very reliable system with low maintenance costs.
- High efficiency: we are facing state-of-the-art facilities in which the efficiency of the system plays a fundamental role.
- Monitoring and automation: we can monitor our installation and control multiple aspects of it through online applications.
When is solar watering profitable?
In order to determine the profitability of a solar irrigation installation, we must have clear what its fundamental characteristics are compared to conventional installations, in order to be able to analyze which technology is the best suited to our particular case.
Firstly, it must be clear that the solar pumps for irrigation will work during the hours of the Sun, while conventional equipment can be connected and disconnected at their discretion.
On the other hand, photovoltaic pumping requires an important initial investment to then work autonomously without practically requiring maintenance and without variable costs associated with the operation, unlike conventional installations in which the greatest expense lies in the cost of fuel and the maintenance.
In conclusion, photovoltaic pumping installations are more profitable the more pumping hours are required, even reaching amortization periods of less than 2 years in many cases.
Solar irrigation in Spain
The technology of solar irrigation, and solar water pumps for irrigation, has grown exponentially in our country, and this is due to a series of characteristics that make it an ideal solution within our borders:
- They are very profitable facilities.
- Great durability and reliability of the systems.
- The months of greatest demand for water coincide with those with the highest solar radiation.
- Being isolated facilities of the network, the “Sun Tax” does not affect them.
- Virtually eliminates fixed costs.
- Avoid the continuous increases in the price of electricity and fuels.
- They can cover all pumping needs.