Could this startup make water-based solar energy a reality?
When tech entrepreneur Ran Alcalay and his cousin, Avi, discovered a glaring flaw in photovoltaic (PV) solar energy technologies, they decided they must find a way to fix it.
The problem was quite simple to explain: Traditional PV tech cannot be fully utilized on bodies of water.
The cousins understood early on that water-based solar energy is the future, especially with developers running out of unused land for solar farms and setting their sights on maritime solutions.
The way of water
That is how the story of Xfloat began. Founded by Ran and Avi in 2018, Xfloat has managed to develop an innovative system that allows for navigation of solar panels on water to maximize their energy output.
“Using this [tracking] technology, we can generate up to 20 percent more energy per solar energy panel,” Ran tells ISRAEL21c, adding that this is what makes ground-based PV tech the most cost-efficient way to generate renewable energy today.
“You can slap a tracker on a panel, and it generates maximum energy via the same panel. This greatly lowers costs. On water, you couldn’t do that until now.”
Among the first investors in the company were the Israel Innovation Authority, Spanish water operator MIYA, tech giant Synergy and a group of private investors.
Xfloat employs 14 people, in addition to subcontractors. The employees include naval engineers — some of them Israeli navy veterans – as well as artificial intelligence and solar energy experts.
“The mechanism we’ve created is our intellectual property,” Alcalay says.
Nine months ago, Xfloat opened pilot water-based solar farms in northern Israel.
Alcalay admits that Xfloat is not the first company to install solar panels on a body of water, but he describes the predecessors as “Generation A” in contrast to Xfloat’s “Generation B” Smart farms.
“Unlike other utility-scale [renewable energy companies] that operate using ground-anchored engines, we utilize hydrostatics to create movement using controlled buoyancy tanks,” he says.
“Then, using a centralized water management mechanism, we can change the floating power of the tanks. The tanks alter their location and we track their movement to place the solar panels in the precise position [to get the panels to produce maximum energy].”
Xfloat’s pilot solar farms have already begun to generate energy commercially. “The simplicity of our mechanism allows for an easy expansion of the farms from pilot level to industrial scale — to generate hundreds of megawatts.”
The company also utilizes its data and AI professionals to control and manage the valuable information received from the pilot farms. “We developed all the data acquisition and processing mechanisms ourselves. As a result, we now have a pool of knowledge that no one else has.”
Alcalay adds that the steady diet of data teaches the system how to efficiently react to changing environments, such as wind loads. These types of systems already exist but are operating only on the ground. “We are the first to make it work on water.”
Have you been thinking about making the switch to home solar power?
It’s never been easier! From the initial consultation to installation, SunPower will guide you through the simple five step process. SunPower’s systems are backed by the company’s industry-leading Complete Confidence Warranty, which covers everything from panels and racking to monitoring hardware and storage.
Did we pique your interest in home solar power? Have a solar energy consultant from SunPower help you customize the solar package that best matches your needs and life at home. SunPower will also provide different financing options.
Home Solar Solutions provided by SunPower
You’ve always thought about taking the first step towards harnessing solar energy, and now’s the time to consider your individual benefits by contacting a SunPower energy consultant.
Make your mark
A: It is a complete turn-key solar energy system that contains a solar panel design that fits your roof, full installation of solar panels, microinverters, and mounting system, complete with a monitoring app for your phone. There are different price points to fit the budgets of the many people. IKEA, together with SunPower, intends to make clean energy affordable, accessible and easy to understand.
A: In order to provide to our customers with great technical expertise, IKEA is partnering with SunPower. SunPower has been in business for more than 37 years and globally has more than 13.2 GW of installed solar capacity to date. That’s the equivalent of powering over 7.5 million homes each year. SunPower’s solar panels among the most efficient and durable technologies on the market. The Home Solar offer combines the IKEA knowledge of life at home with SunPower’s technical expertise in solar energy to secure a great customer offer and experience. You will be redirected to the SunPower website after signing into your IKEA Family account for more information.
A: First, sunlight hits a solar panel on the roof. The panels generate direct current (DC), energy which flows to an inverter. The inverter converts the electricity from DC to alternating current (AC), which you can then use to power your home. It’s beautifully simple and clean, and it’s getting more efficient and affordable all the time. The solar system generates electricity during the day to power your home. If you have a solar storage system, any excess solar energy generated can be stored in your home solar storage battery. In the evening, the energy stored in the solar storage system can be used to help decrease the amount of electricity drawn from the grid. The solar plus storage system enables you to generate your own electricity and then use it when it best suits your needs.
A: When you install solar panels you will save by reducing your electricity consumption from the grid and thus, you’ll see a reduction in your electricity bill. If you choose to install a battery, your savings will likely be even higher as you can consume the excess electricity you produced and stored during sunny hours in the evening or when the sun is not shining.
A: One of the advantages of solar energy is that the addition of PV panels can increase home values. In 2019, an online real estate marketplace found that U.S. homes with solar panels typically sell for 4.1% more than comparable homes.
Home Solar offer
A: IKEA is launching the partnership with SunPower in the state of California in September 2022. California is an excellent place to start, as it leads the United States in residential solar installation. IKEA Home Solar is already present in Australia, and 10 markets in Europe, so we are just getting started, with desire to expand soon.
A: No, the offer is currently for a complete solar system, including a battery if desired. We would suggest you reach out to the company that originally installed your panels to see if they can assist to install more panels or a battery.
A: You would need to own the home where you want the solar system to be installed. In case you live in a rented home the purchase of the solar system must be done by your landlord.
A: At this time, our FOCUS is on residential solar systems. Check back with us to see if the offer is updated in the future.
TO GO SOLAR
Solar electric has matured into a reliable cost-effective solution for producing your own power. Why rent / buy your power from the power company when you can produce your own?
With creative financing solutions, the cost of going solar is less than your current electric bill cost. Just like owning a home, start building equity with your solar electric system.
HOW IT WORKS
the solar panels convert the sunlight into useable DC electricity
the inverter transforms the DC electricity into the more common AC electricity used by most household appliances
the solar energy is then used with in your home during the day when you are producing electricity to cut your reliance on the utility grid
excess electricity you generate is sent to the electric grid and power you need at night is taken from the grid
TO FIT YOUR BUDGET
Our FOCUS is on delivering cutting edge technology at affordable prices. We also offer creative payment options from leasing to partnerships in order to best fit any budget. Rest assured, you will pay the lowest rate possible for solar energy!
No Personal Credit Checks Receive 30% Tax Credit Immediate Underwriting Approval Own Your System Build Equity in Your Home Reduce your Energy Bills Fixed Energy Price
Receive 30% Tax Credit No Money Down Own Your System Build Equity in Your Home Reduce your Energy Bills Fixed Energy Price
A simple path to
Our goal is to keep the process of going solar simple and transparent. From your initial meeting with our energy specialists, we will walk you through the process of going solar without disrupting your daily routine.
IGS in-house technicians are trained on installing your system to the highest industry standards and compliance with local building code requirements.
Going solar should be as easy as changing a light bulb.
We will inspect your property, design a solar electric system for your needs and arrange for all local permits needed for installation
Our team of professionals will show up, install your new solar electric system on an agreed upon schedule
Our project manager will inspect your installation and ensure that everything is ready for you to start saving money
Your electric utility will ensure that the system is installed and connected to the electric grid properly for you to be credited
Frequently Asked Questions
Depending on the size of your system and local permitting requirements, we can complete your installation within 90 days from the date of contract signing. The actual installation for a normal home takes our teams about 2-3 days.
For commercial systems, install time with vary depending on the type of system and site conditions. Just shoot us a message and we can let you know quickly the approximate timelines for an install.
We have the option of mounting solar panels on your roof or on the ground.
Solar panels are designed to last more than 30 years
Our trained professional install certified mounting hardware engineered to withstand the elements of the weather on your roof and are sealed against water leaks.
Most states have local and state property tax exemptions. Our renewable energy specialists can assist you in answer these questions.
IGS will always offer you options of upgrading your equipment in the future. Our aim is designing a system which can be expanded as future technologies are available on the marketplace.
Solar panels will also produce electricity whether it’s cloudy or sunny. The power output of each solar panel is directly related to how much sunlight is hitting the surface. When its cloudy, less energy hits the solar panels causing a lower power output then when its sunny. Our solar energy models simulate shading and seasonality of your specific site.
It’s easy! Just normal home care. We recommend to make sure there are no debris on the solar panels (large amounts of leaves, limbs, etc), this normally is something that you can have cleared off every few years (depending on your location). If you live in a dusty area, just use water to keep the dust off your panels.
What about snow? YES! It’s always great to safely remove snow from the solar panels (if you can), if not, it will melt off eventually. We factor snow conditions into the annual output of your solar energy system.
Aside from this, nothing! All of our systems are installed with a monitoring application to keep on top of the system health.
All of our solar panels carry a 25 year power warranty. This means the solar panels are warrantied to produce 80% of their power after 25 years!!
How do we know this? We’ve been in business for 20 years. Yes. We have solar panels on our building which are operating perfectly after 20 years of being installed.
Our inverters carry a 12 year standard warranty with option to increase the warranty to 25 years.
Who makes the equipment your installing? We only work with the industries leading, stable and proven companies. Our providers have not only lead the industry in technology innovation, but also in market penetration. Work with the best and don’t worry about the rest.
Just ask us! We are 100% transparent and will share the technical facts and comparisons of our equipment to others.
The main point:
We want equipment for you that last. Having a solar panel which is 1% more efficient from a company that will be out of business in 5 years, doesn’t help you when something goes wrong. After 20 years, we’ve watched companies come and go in the solar energy industry. This is our profession and passion, let us guide you.
- The ITC is a 30 percent tax credit for solar systems on residential (under Section 25D) and commercial (under Section 48) properties. The Section 48 commercial credit can be applied to both customer-sited commercial solar systems and large-scale utility solar farms.
- The residential and commercial solar ITC has helped the U.S. solar industry grow by more than 10,000% percent since it was implemented in 2006, with an average annual growth of 50% over the last decade alone.
- Congress passed a multi-year extension of the ITC in 2015:
Polycrystalline solar panels
Many have also heard about polycrystalline panels. Polycrystalline solar panels are made from small pieces of silicon crystals, and scraps. Thanks to them, environmental pollution is minimized. That’s all to have an approximate idea, and experienced specialists in the field can tell about its technical use.
The difference between monocrystalline and polycrystalline solar panels
A monocrystalline panel has higher productivity in direct sunlight, and a polycrystalline panel has more stable productivity due to the distribution of crystals. The polycrystalline panel is better able to generate electricity in low light conditions.
So, we already talked about solar panels above. If we generalize, we distinguish several main types of solar panels: monocrystalline, polycrystalline, PERC, thin film panels, and according to professional evaluations, another type. shingled solar panels. In particular, shingled solar panels have a fairly high productivity in the shade. It is their main advantage.
There are lithium-ion, lithium-polymer, nickel-cadmium, gel, and graphene batteries. These are the main types of batteries. If the panels are to be used to generate electricity, batteries, inverters and other charge controllers will be needed. Let’s talk about the most important features of batteries. They are certainly cost-effective. The energy obtained from solar panels can be stored in batteries and used when there is no sunlight.
The most efficient solar panels battery
The lithium-ion battery is one of the most popular and efficiently used batteries because its charge and discharge cycle is incomparably large, it is small in size, it has a large capacity, and it is flexible in terms of parameters. The battery is designed to store energy, even in places where there is no electricity at all. You can find more information about solar panel production on our website.
So, to summarize the main functions of solar panels, let’s highlight one more. Monocrystalline, polycrystalline, and shingled types of solar panels are mostly used in the industry. The main industrial advantage of the solar plant is that no additional space is required, as in the case of CHPs. The plant assembled with solar panels significantly saves the money spent on electricity and is an ecologically clean and renewable natural resource source.
06.10.2020 Solar energy: what you need to know? Modern systems need to adapt quickly to markets, technologies, and current requirements. This field is undergoing enormous changes, that are connected with the automation of production, process control, and the Rapid development of information technologies.
15.01.2020 Advantages of Half-Cell Solar Modules Half-cell modules are more reliable due to their long-life performance. They are less sensitive to micro-cracks thanks to their compact design. LA Solar delivers half-cell modules with the most rigorous certifications and the strongest guarantees in the market.
19.06.2021 RENWEX 2021 International Forum. Exhibition LA Solar kindly invites everyone to attend the RENWEX 2021 “Renewable Energy and Electric Vehicles” International Forum. Exhibition on June 22-24, where the latest generation solar equipment and innovative electric vehicles will be presented.
14.07.2021 UL CERTIFICATION From now on we kindly inform you that LA Solar has successfully passed one more essential testing. the Underwriters Laboratories (UL) certification and all of the produced products are reliable and efficient. Our company improve warranty for the whole production
24.09.2021 Which One to Choose? The Most Common Renewable Energy Type Which is the most effective energy source for houses? Let’s delve deeper and compare solar module types to see which one best fits you. We first need to cover our basis. Let’s go to find out the best one!
12.10.2021 Going Wholly Green and Solar. Is it Possible in LA? Depending on the state that you are in, you can decide which is the best type of system to pick. That’s one of the benefits of going solar in Los Angeles. They are both environmentally friendly, you can also consider the price difference.
07.11.2021 First Armenian Manufactured All-Black Solar Modules! Soon! Being the first local manufacturer of monocrystalline panels in Armenia, LA Solar Factory offers its consumers the most efficient solar panels in the field of solar energy.
25.11.2021 Advantages of PERC Cell Technology PERC technology is leading both in the world and in the local Armenian market. Armenian-made solar panels are manufactured according to international standards, standing out due to their high efficiency and competitive prices.
29.09.2022 What is the highest efficiency solar panel? Let’s talk about some solar panels and the highest efficiency of solar panels. There are many companies in the field dealing with solar power plants and systems
06.10.2022 Is it harder to sell a house with solar panels? The main advantage of a house with solar panels is first of all significant cost savings. Solar energy is environmentally friendly, unlimited and does not harm the environment.
20.10.2022 How Do Solar Panels Lower Your Electric Bill? A modern person today is looking for solutions that will significantly simplify everyday life and reduce costs. Thanks to solar panels, it is possible to save significant amounts of money, and direct the saved funds to cover other needs
25.01.2023 LA Solar is participating in the flagship solar industry event The company LA Solar is participating for the first time in the flagship solar industry event, taking place February 14-16 at the Long Beach Convention Center in CA. We will be showcasing our high-quality solar equipment at booth number 577
21.02.2023 LA SOLAR PARTICIPATED IN THE INTERSOLAR GLOBAL EXHIBITION EXPO IN THE USA LA SOLAR, a company engaged in producing and exporting solar modules operating in the Alliance free economic zone, presented its services and products at one of the world’s leading expo exhibitions
27.06.2023 How do solar panels work? Are you curious about how solar panels work and how they’re able to generate electricity from the sun? Look no further! In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the inner workings of solar panels and explore the science behind their energy production