New Agrivoltaic Developments in India at REI Expo 2021

The large-scale combination of agriculture under photovoltaic systems seems promising. According to a study by the German research institute Fraunhofer, just 1 % of India's agricultural land would suffice to install around 630 GW of additional photovoltaic capacity through the use of so-called agrivoltaics. For a deep-dive into the topic, IGEF-SO and the National Solar Energy Foundation of India (NSEFI) hosted an exchange session on the third day of the REI Expo 2021. Aiming to foster best-practice exchange, the session brought together industry experts from the field of Agriphotovoltaics (AgriPV) who each shared their experiences. Inaugurated by Dr. Stephan Hesselmann, Economic Minister Counsellor at the German embassy in Delhi, the session hosted four guest speakers to provide all attendees with their expertise and experience in the various projects they are conducting in India and Europe. Mr. Subrahmanyam Pulipaka, CEO of NSEFI, initiated the discussion with his remarks on Indian policy reforms on AgriPV. Mr. Miguel Herrero Cangas from SolarPower Europe (SPE) continued with a presentation of SPE’s “best-practice guide” for AgriPV, detailing insights into successful projects paired with lessons-learned, as well as a full life cycle assessment of agriphotovoltaic infrastructure. Thirdly, participants were provided an exclusive glance at a rather scientific approach to the topic: Mr. Vivek Saraf from Indian company SunSeed APV introduced their artificial intelligence platform as means to analyze micro-climate, water-crop requirements and light-shading to simulate crop yield and resulting revenues. Thereafter, Mr. Shavan Sampath (Oakridge Energy Pvt. Ltd) offered his learnings from a pilot project to add on the discussion on the potential challenges and synergies of AgriPV. In a final presentation, Mr. Maximilian Vorast from Fraunhofer ISE elaborated on the development of regulatory frameworks concerning AgriPV norms in Germany, aiming to further the Indian pathway to strong domestic standards.

Recordings of all presentations are available: here

Presentation slides of the speakers:


Dr. Stephan Hesselmann during his inauguration speech