Solar Racking Systems for Agriculture

Dual-use solar is the solution to maximize output from a piece of ground.

Agrivoltaics is an exciting development in the world of solar power installations. This process combines farming or grazing with renewable power generation on the same plot of land. In many cases, there is a symbiotic relationship between the shade of the solar panels and crops being grown or the animals grazing. The shade of solar panels can help slow evaporation and conserve water use. Studies are showing that dual-use provides 160% output on average compared to using the land for just agriculture or solar alone.

Amish country farm barn field agriculture with grazing cows under solar panels

MT Solar Pole Mounts are perfectly suited to farm applications such as:

  • Grazing Cattle, Sheep, Goats

  • Crops and Food Production

  • Pollinator Habitat

Benefits of MT Solar Mounts in Agrivoltaics:

Ground Clearance
The higher your mounts are off the ground, the easier it is to work under and around the arrays. Front edge ground clearance provides access for farming equipment or to keep your arrays out of reach of grazing animals. The design of MT Solar mounts allows for more ground clearance than most mounting solutions on the market.

Tilt Adjust 0-90º
With a quick adjustment to full vertical, you can open up rows to allow equipment in for tilling or seeding. Tilt adjust also allows for seasonal adjustments to optimize array output.

Steel Poles
The strength of a steel pole support structure makes it possible to co-locate your solar arrays with larger animals such as cattle. It is also a good investment if your farming equipment gets a little off-course.

Brussels sprout growing alongside solar arrays
farmer tends to crops combined with solar arrays at Colorado State University
Comparing PV Module transparency with food crops at Colorado State University. Photo: Sandbox Solar

Studies across the country are underway to examine the best uses and combinations of PV solar and agriculture.

Colorado State University and Sandbox Solar collaborated to determine the effects of PV module transparency with food crops. Read the story here.

Renewable energy system for a farm study in the nation’s capital

In the Washington DC area, a study garden combines many functions into a small plot:

  • Renewable PV power generation
  • Food production
  • Rainwater collection from the arrays
  • Solar-powered irrigation.
newly planted crops in an agrivoltaics study
An agrivoltaics study in Washington DC uses MT Solar mounts to shade food crops and captures rain water. Photo: Metropolitan Solar

Full-Size Farm Implements and Solar

Researchers at the Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment at University of Illinois demonstrate how full-size farm equipment can work between large MT Solar arrays. The study involves growing sorghum and soybeans in the shade of the solar arrays.

Easy Tilt Adjustment Allows Access

Watch this video to see how easy it is to change the tilt on MT Solar mounts. Changing the tilt temporarily can provide access for equipment or laborers.

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