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Floating-PV – a Key Solution for France’s Energy Transition

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Unused bodies of water offer huge potential for Floating-PV systems

From disused coal quarries and mineral extraction pits to unused reservoirs, Floating-PV offers tremendous potential for contributing to the renewable energy transition across Europe. It allays the debate over land use and allows owners of artificial lakes to make the most of their bodies of water.

BayWa r.e. is positioned as a leader and key player in the floating solar market: with the experience of our 19 floating photovoltaic parks already built and commissioned, we have the largest portfolio on the market. Thanks to the development of our own certified and proven solution, we are your preferred partner.

Owner of a body of water, do you want to enhance it? We take care of all stages of the project, from design to construction and operation.

Floating solar project developer, are you looking for a robust, stable and durable floating photovoltaic system? We have the solution, with a turnkey EPC and O&M offer, to offer you!

Key Facts

19 floating photovoltaic parks

570,000 solar panels

304 MWp

Cumulative power of all BayWa r.e.'s floating solar parks

A huge potential in France

The territory of France abounds in lakes from former quarries as well as water reservoirs for various uses (drinking water, irrigation, etc.). These sites, whose geographical distribution is relatively homogenous on the national level on the one hand, and which are often neglected or undervalued on the other hand, can be given a second lease of life thanks to our Floating-PV solution.

In addition, this upgrading has the advantage of being long-term, as the life span of such an installation is at least 30 years.

Floating-PV technology allows for generation of electricity in a reliable, sustainable and long-term manner with minimum impact on aquatic life and optimum grip on the water.

The experience we have gained from the deployment of large Floating-PV projects in the Netherlands has given us unique know-how that is available throughout the project life cycle, from development through construction to operation.

In France, floating solar projects are under study and under development. Visits to our floating solar park achievements are organized to allow you to see the floating structure, the installation and answer all questions!

  • Advantages

    Floating-PV offers considerable advantages

    Our Floating-PV technology has many advantages: reduction of evaporation from bodies of water, fast construction and optimised maintenance, as well as improved yields thanks to the cooling effect of the water coupled with the large surface areas used.

    These advantages offset the increased installation costs of Floating-PV systems compared to ground-based solar systems of the same size.

    The reduction in evaporation through Floating-PV systems can play a decisive role in the more southern regions of Europe, where water supplies are being hit hard by increasingly frequent droughts.

    Thanks to these installations, owners and managers of water reservoirs can potentially obtain double benefit by collecting rental income on the one hand and preserving the water reserves of their lakes on the other. With regard to reservoirs of drinking water, our technology is certified not to produce any pollutants. 

  • Important figures

    The vast possibilities of Floating-PV: significant figures for Germany

    A study carried out by research institute Fraunhofer ISE shows the considerable potential offered by Floating-PV. Assuming the use of only 10% of all German man-made lakes suitable for Floating-PV (taking into account all exclusion criteria such as nature and landscape protection, recreation/leisure activities, etc.), its potential would be more than 2 GWp in Germany. 

    410,000 homes could be supplied with power in this way with a neutral impact on the environment. With this solar energy production, over a million tonnes of CO2 could also be saved each year. 

    Furthermore, the research institute Fraunhofer ISE estimates that floating solar can potentially generate 1.6 to 5.5 GW in Germany just from the lakes from lignite mines. 

    According to a study by the World Bank, there is a potential of 204 GWp across Europe alone, if we use 10% of the man-made freshwater reservoirs.


More water evaporates from reservoirs than is consumed by humans.

Prof. Eicke Weber, UC Berkeley (ret)

Floating-PV systems from the market leader 

With more than 500,000 solar panels installed on eleven floating solar parks (cumulative power of 230 MWp), BayWa r.e. is the European market leader in floating solar and has notably built the largest floating solar park in Europe in Sellingen in the Netherlands, with a capacity of 41.1 MWp.

A study in partnership with the Hanze University of Applied Sciences (Groningen) on the potential environmental impacts has been underway on our Bomhofsplas floating solar park in the Netherlands since February 2020. It runs for 5 years. After a first year of study, the results are very positive on the quality of the water as well as on the flora and fauna near the park.

Our expertise: we can handle every step of the project

As a provider of energy solutions along the entire value chain, we put our expertise at your service: 

  • Planning and technical consulting 
  • Reporting and analysis 
  • Project development
  • Procurement from long-term partners 
  • Turnkey construction 
  • Financing 
  • Direct sale of energy
  • Power purchase agreements (PPAs) 
  • Operation and maintenance
  • Administrative and commercial management

Our certified Floating-PV solution 

In conjunction with a consortium of technical partners, we have designed and developed a fully integrated and innovative Floating-PV system. This system, which is distinguished by its robustness and stability, incorporates our VDE-certified electrical and mechanical system design.

Research and innovation work recognised: our integrated Floating-PV solution was recently awarded PV Magazine’s innovation prize.

  • Modular solar boat structure
    • Stable, durable and scalable system long-lasting materials for all components for min. 25 years 
    • Combination of high quality-multilayer hard plastic (HDPE) floats and steel construction
    • Integrated DC cable concept for fixed and protected cabling
    • Maintenance paths integrated through the floats
    • Inverter boat on the same structural basis
    • Cables certified for in water installation
    • Electrical concept VDE certified
    • Static design based on Eurocode 
  • Properties

    Dimensions: 4 × 6 m
    Modules per boat: 12 (6 east/6 west-oriented)
    Capacity: 4.8 kWp

France could soon become a leading country in Floating-PV in Europe. The use of this new technology will undeniably contribute to the achievement of its objectives in the fight against climate change. 

Need a partner to design or build your floating solar park?

We offer complete or tailored support for each of your floating solar projects: from project development, planning, procurement, financing, construction to commissioning and operational management.

Do you have a project in development? We also offer turnkey EPC services for third parties.

Our floating solar solution meets all European standards, which is a guarantee of long-term reliability. You can count on the best possible yields and efficient maintenance throughout the duration of operations.


Do you have any questions ? In ou FAQ section, we answer the most common questions by lake owners/co-developers, banks and investors, municipalities and politics regarding Floating-PV :

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