Renewables Leader Iberdrola Seeks Your Innovative Solutions For PV Plant Structures

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In recent years, the price of steel and other supplies has been rising, affecting the profitability of PV plants. In this context, Iberdrola, through this startup challenge, is searching for innovative structures, materials & layouts for PV plants. Apply by 8 April!

The Iberdrola group is present in more than 40 countries, including Spain, the United Kingdom, the United States, Brazil, Mexico, and Australia, where the company has generation, network, and energy retail operations. In keeping with its pledge to combat climate change, the Iberdrola group is backing renewable energy as the way to drive the energy transition and the much-needed decarbonization and electrification of the economy. The group plans to invest €150bn by 2030, raising its renewable capacity to 95 GW by the end of the decade. Iberdrola also has the largest operational photovoltaic plant in Europe – Núñez de Balboa (Badajoz), with 500 Mwp – and it is currently building the Francisco Pizarro plant in Cáceres that will have a power of 590 MWp.

The Need For Innovative PV Plant Structures

Solar photovoltaic generation is one of Iberdrola’s main pillars of growth, resulting in the installation of 1200 MW of new solar capacity in 2021. This directly contributes towards achieving nearly 35 GW of renewable installed capacity worldwide. In recent years, the price of steel and other supplies has been rising, affecting the profitability of photovoltaic plants.

In this context, Iberdrola, through its International Startup Program PERSEO, is searching for new structures for photovoltaic plants to optimize costs, either by manufacturing with steel alternatives or with a lower ratio of steel per MW built than that of conventional structures.

Iberdrola is seeking solutions aimed at large photovoltaic plants, which are generally built on rustic estates. Proposals for consideration could include:

  • Structures manufactured using innovative materials and/or new designs
  • Structures manufactured using materials in line with circular economy models that are sustainable and environmentally friendly
  • Structures with a lower ratio of steel per MW installed

Discover the Iberdrola New Structures for PV Plants Startup Challenge

Your proposals will be classified into three categories, for which Iberdrola will establish a base case to standardize the evaluation of the proposals. The base case study is an ideal square or rectangular, compact floor plan, the specifications of which are attached at the bottom of this page.

However, the challenge is open to all proposals, so, if the proposal does not fit this case study, it will also be analyzed, provided the competitive advantages of the proposal for a specific type of site are explained.

Category A: New Designs of Fixed PV Structures

New designs of fixed structures for photovoltaic plants that entail alternative layouts or models, with either new or conventional materials. Participants are asked to define a layout, a single-row, and a cost (€/KWp) for the ideal layout.

Category B: New Materials for PV Plants

New materials used in conventional fixed structures for photovoltaic plants, maintaining the current bar structure concept with a 3v10 configuration. Participants in the challenge are asked to define the cost (€/kWp).

Category C: Alternative Layouts or Models for PV Structures

New designs of structures with trackers for photovoltaic plants proposing alternative layouts or models, with either new or conventional materials. Participants in the challenge are asked to define the cost (€/kWp).

Why You Should Scale Your Business with Iberdrola

By participating in this startup challenge, you have the chance to win a prize consisting of signing a collaboration and proof of concept agreement with PERSEO and/or with any other relevant Iberdrola group company. This agreement will include:

  • PERSEO will cover the costs of the collaboration and the proof of concept (PoC)
  • The winner will be provided with the necessary technical support to test their solution
  • The winner will be given access to equipment, appliances, infrastructure, high technology sites, and joint work areas

If the PoC is satisfactory, PERSEO and/or any other relevant company, directly or indirectly through another Iberdrola group company, may offer you the opportunity to scale your solution through commercial agreements. In addition, PERSEO may consider investing in your solution!

How Will Iberdrola Select The Winner?

A team of experts from the Iberdrola Renewables area will be responsible for selecting the innovative solution(s) that are not subject to fluctuating steel prices and improve the profitability of its investments. The following attributes will be favorably rated:

  • The maturity and reliability of the solution
  • Ease of installation and maintenance
  • Investment and operational costs
  • Scalability of the solution for this and other applications in the electricity sector
  • Structures that optimize the installation process in terms of time or costs
  • Structures produced using manufacturing methods that reduce process-related emissions and use fewer material resources

Important Dates for the Iberdrola New Structures for PV Plants Startup Challenge

Applications close on 8 April.

Following this deadline, your proposals will be evaluated internally. Evaluators may contact the participants at any time to request additional information, if necessary.

The evaluation process will end in May 2022, when PERSEO will select the winner of the startup challenge!

>> Ready to scale your innovative PV solution with the Iberdrola Startup Challenge? Apply now!

>> Download the Base Case Study Document




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