Our project, LightCrops, aims to revolutionise renewable energy generation by integrating solar panels with olive trees. In 2022, global renewable energy capacity exceeded 3371 gigawatts (GW), with solar energy accounting for 31% of this total. The primary challenge in deploying solar panels is finding suitable surfaces, and in Spain alone, there are 2.75 million hectares of olive groves. LightCrops aims to leverage this vast agricultural space to harness solar energy.
Recent studies have shown that different crops have a saturation point for the amount of sunlight they can absorb for photosynthesis. Beyond this point, excess sunlight not only fails to increase productivity but can actually harm crops. Our goal is to introduce the concept of agrovoltaics by installing solar panels above olive trees to capture excess radiation, optimizing humidity levels, reducing water consumption, and enhancing crop productivity.
To achieve this, we will configure the opacity of the solar panels during installation based on crop type, humidity, temperature, and radiation levels. We will use Copernicus data to gather these essential metrics.
We will rely on Copernicus data and other satellite sensing, terrestrial sensors, and existing models to identify crops where radiation exceeds the saturation point, indicating that our solution is suitable for deployment. This data-driven approach will ensure the precision and effectiveness of our solar panel installations.
Our project contributes to addressing challenges in international development and humanitarian aid:
Our dynamic team of four individuals is the driving force behind LightCrops, each contributing unique skills and expertise:
🛰️ Francisco Muro - The Satellite Master
Francisco is our satellite expert, wielding a deep understanding of satellite technologies. His proficiency in satellite data acquisition and interpretation ensures the reliability of our data sources, underpinning the project's precision.
💰 Alejandro García - The Financial Visionary
Alejandro, our financial visionary, navigates LightCrops through economic viability. His strategic financial insights shape our business model, ensuring fiscal sustainability alongside environmental impact.
☀️ Manuel Martínez - The Data Specialist
Manuel leads data optimization using satellite data. His data management and analysis skills guide data-driven decisions, enhancing project efficiency.
👨💻 Ignacio Mata - The Development Virtuoso
Ignacio is our technical genius, orchestrating the integration of satellite data, solar panel technology, and agriculture. His expertise ensures that LightCrops remains at the forefront of innovation.
Together, our team's synergy and expertise drive LightCrops towards a sustainable, innovative future.