Agri-PV in Heuchlingen

The GMS® DOUBLE installation in Oedheim protects raspberry bushes from heavy rain, hail and too much sunlight

In August 2022, MKG GÖBEL set up an experimental plant at the State Teaching and Research Institute for Viticulture and Fruit Growing (LVWO), in cooperation with our partner BayWa r.e. The project will help to gather practical experience and to offer better solutions for combining photovoltaics and agriculture.

In its January 2023 issue, the “Erneuerbare Energien” magazine presents pilot projects by which BayWa r.e. aims to find out more about the impact of solar canopies over fruit and berry fields, so-called fruitvoltaic systems. These systems replace the previous foil coverings and not only offer the added value of generating electrical power, but also aim to improve fruit quality by providing optimised conditions for plant health, growth and production.

BayWa r.e. and MKG Göbel are working together to achieve this goal. As part of this partnership, MKG GÖBEL has built a rainproof structure over a raspberry plantation in southern Germany. The solar roof has an output of 115 kilowatts and a light transmission of around 70 percent; this ensures that there is enough solar energy left over for the plants. The State Teaching and Research Institute for Viticulture and Fruit Growing (LVWO), on whose experimental fruit farm Heuchlingen near Bad Friedrichshall (Heilbronn district) the plantation was built, will monitor the quality of the fruit under the solar modules.

With such pilot plants, Baywa r.e. aims to advance fruit farming research in combination with photovoltaics, and also actively support decisions in business and politics by providing concrete insights. “Our Agri-PV projects can be a significant response to the crises we are currently facing,” explains Stephan Schindele, Head of Agri-PV Product Management at BayWa r.e. “In times of climate change, water shortages and energy crises, we should look for multifunctional approaches that support sustainable development in the EU and worldwide.”

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