Innovation team hosts bp delegates at our Church Farm UK solar site

Lightsource bp’s Innovation team recently organised a visit for a group of bp delegates around our 5MWp Church Farm solar site near Slapton, Leighton Buzzard in the UK. The delegates were from four different bp units, which included bp ventures, bp pulse, bp Innovation & engineering, and bp solar. The Lightsource bp team was led by Technical Director Chris Buckland and Operations and Maintenance Director Rumesh Chauhan.

The wind and rain did not discourage the delegates from enjoying their visit with us. The day began with a health and safety induction and a general overview of the site. Delegates were also split into groups and taken on a supervised tour from our experts, during which they received an explanation of how the project is operated and maintained. The visit also gave the Lightsource bp Innovation team an opportunity to showcase some of the ongoing projects at the Church Farm site including the use of hydrophobic coatings and heat sinks to boost production from the modules.

The Church Farm solar project was designed to be compatible with sheep grazing, which allows the land to retain its agricultural use. The land was previously used for grazing sheep and horses, and it now houses sheep for the majority of the year. Grazing sheep on this project allows the landowner to draw additional income from the land, and the solar farm occupies only about 30% of the space, so the rest of the site can be put to additional use.

This is an excellent example of how renewable energy projects can be designed to be compatible with existing land use practices and contribute to the local economy while reducing carbon emissions.

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