New research from the Australian National University’s School of Engineering suggests floating solar panels could provide unlimited energy to densely populated countries in South East Asia and West Africa. 

As we embark on the biggest energy change in history, vast amounts of solar and wind energy are needed to support the move away from coal and gas. But in countries like Indonesia and Nigeria with poor wind resources and rapidly increasing populations, alternative strategies need to be implemented to meet net-zero goals by 2050.       

The research indicates seas surrounding Nigeria and the Indonesian Archipelago have the greatest potential for solar energy production. The regions experience calmer seas due to their close proximity to the equator, and would therefore reduce the cost of engineering defences required to protect the panels.

The Wire’s Mary-Kate Hannagan spoke to research co-author, Emeritus Professor Andrew Blakers from The Australian National University to find out more…

Image: Image Courtesy: SolarQuarter

Produced By: Mary-Kate Hannagan

Featured In Story: Andrew Blakers, Emeritus Professor, Australian National University

First aired on The Wire, Monday 7 August 2023