credit for all photos: sandbox solar

“We get morning sun and evening sun but during the day we also get reflection off the buildings which we hope will produce a significant amount of solar”

–Tom from Spring Hill Greens Farm in Fort Collins

Agrivoltaics, the symbiotic relationship between agriculture and solar energy, has gained traction nationwide. However, companies like Sandbox Solar are taking it to a new level. One of their unique approaches allows farmers to optimize solar energy production without compromising valuable farming space. Enter the Spring Hill Greens Project.

Sandbox Solar to the Rescue

Nestled in Fort Collins, Spring Hill Greens Farm set its sights on becoming carbon-neutral. However, the farm faced a significant challenge: the need for more solar energy than traditional ground-mounted solar panels could accommodate. That’s when Sandbox Solar stepped in with their expertise in agrivoltaics.

Bifacial Solar Panels: The Game-Changing Solution

Thinking outside the box, Sandbox Solar devised a plan to harness the limited space between the farm’s three greenhouses. They turned to bifacial solar panels, which absorb sunlight from both sides. This meant that the panels captured the sun’s rays from above and harvested the substantial amount of sunlight reflected off the neighboring greenhouses.

Sandbox Solar and the Future of Agrivoltaics

This solution allowed the farm to optimize land by sharing space for agricultural practices and solar panels. Sandbox Solar’s exceptional approach to agrivoltaics exemplifies the potential for renewable energy and farming.

Use the following Sandbox Solar links to learn more about the Spring Hill Farms Project:

COSSA Policy Connection: Agrivoltaics Bill

Colorado’s SB-092, the Agricultural Producers Use of Agrivoltaics Bill, represents a big step forward for sustainable solar development. By combining solar energy infrastructure with agricultural activities, agrivoltaics can help mitigate some of the impacts of traditional solar projects. COSSA supported and helped write the bill to expedite agrivoltaic adoption through research funding, grants, and tax benefits. Stay updated on Colorado agrivoltaics policy by signing up for our agrivoltaics listserve.

Want a say in Colorado’s solar and storage policy? Become a member or join a committee.