The smart flower: A state of the art solar energy system
Solar energy is getting smarter. Can u imagine getting a clean energy for your home, business, schools that is smart, easy, efficient, and beautiful at the same time? Many people because of the age condition or orientation of their roof are not considered as good candidates for traditional solar energy, that’s why this technology allows more people to benefit from the solar system contributing to a cleaner, greener, and healthier environment.
Pull the power from the flower
Invented in Vienna-Austria, this technology elegantly designed and inspired by mother nature, especially the heliotropic* properties of the sunflower, allows its users to extract the maximum possible clean and renewable energy from the available sunlight. The machine is 5 meters high and has several photovoltaic panel petals (12 solar panels) that cover 18 m2, that can fan out like the petals of the flower and bloom by absorbing the sunlight one by one just like a real flower would. It has a wide range of applications from tourism to hospitality, schools, agriculture, government, and homes.
Here’s how the technology works
Each morning smart flower automatically unfolds from the sunrises and follows it from the perfect angle throughout the day. And in the evening, as the sun sets, it can fold its petals. One of the advantages is that this smart flower was manufactured in a way that helps produces 40% more energy than statistics solar power that are mounted on top of the roof without being able to move, thanks to its innovative smart features, smart use, and smart tracking from sunrise to sunset. It can produce up to 4000 to 6400 Kilowatt/hour/year depending on its location. One simple smart flower supplies enough energy to support a four-person household.
What makes this technology smart and impressive?
A tracker that allows this machine to follow the sun throughout the day thanks to its dual axis system, while always maintaining the optimal 90-degree angle to the sun. In fact, it is programmed with the exact coordinates of its location during its installation in order to track the sun for its specific location and can be able to produce a nominal power of 2.31 kWp* using dual axis tracking.
In extreme atmospheric conditions like stormy weathers, the smart flower automatically folds into a secure position until the weather improves, to prevent system damage, and all this thanks to a smart safety system.
The smart flower is also provided by a smart cleaning system that helps the solar modules to clean themselves when opening and closing, thanks to the brushes on the back of each solar panel, in order to maintain peak solar utilization. And because the enemy of the solar efficiency is heat, the smart cooling rear ventilated module, keeps it cooler than the conventional solar panels (up to 10% more efficient). Additionally, it authorizes its users to know its energy use due to a mobile application that send you specific data, and that’s what we call smart data system.
As a fully integrated solar solution with simple installation, the machine can be taken anywhere, in fact, it is as easy to move as to install. The smart mobility therefore is an added value.
Nowadays, there is around 1,400 installations worldwide (zoos, banks, botanical gardens, universities, homeowners…) aiming to grow during the years to come and increasingly becoming more self-sustainable.
One Smartflower costs around 23 to 24.000 $ and the installation around 6000$ which makes it more suitable for professionals and communities capable of investing in such a massive object to preserve the environment.
To sum up, this technology makes the consumer the master of his energy consumption. In case of surplus of energy produced, and because this energy can’t be stocked, it can be injected in the electrical network. As a matter of fact, EDF* buys back the electricity. This should therefore be considered from a perspective of total self-consumption.
To go further
Smart Flower EV: The same concept but also allowing us to charge our electrical vehicles with fully renewable energy via its EV output.
Smart flower Plus: It adds a powerful and fully integrated battery will also be available to reduce the reliance on electric grid and it also can be used in case of a power outage (ideal for remote locations without grid access).
* Kilowatt peak (kWp): the unit of measurement for the output of a photovoltaic system.
*Heliotropism: Phenomenon during which the plans move in response to the direction of the sun.
*EDF: Électricité de France.
Fournisseur-Energie. 2022. EDF présente la « Smartflower ». [online] Available at: <https://www.fournisseur-energie.com/edf-fournisseur-historique/smartflower/> [Accessed 14 February 2022].
Smartflower. 2022. The Solar Flower You Need to Experience — Smartflower. [online] Available at: <https://smartflower.com/> [Accessed 14 February 2022].
Youtube.com. 2022. [online] Available at: <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7jfvmaWDDMM> [Accessed 14 February 2022].
Youtube.com. 2022. [online] Available at: <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vCQ75gALHTY> [Accessed 14 February 2022].