Firstgreen offers shared savings options for its robotic module cleaning service
As solar plants age, they accumulate dust, dirt, and debris, which can reduce energy output by blocking sunlight from reaching the photovoltaic (PV) panels. Robotic PV module cleaning systems are designed to eliminate this problem by providing more frequent cleaning cycles than traditional manual methods, resulting in improved energy yield and plant output. Firstgreen consulting is a company that offers robotic PV module cleaning services and specializes in providing shared savings program contracts to its clients.
Under this shared savings cleaning contract, Firstgreen charges a base price for a minimum of two cleaning cycles for the client’s plant. However, since they use robotic cleaning technology, their cleaning cycles are expected to be in the range of 8-10 cleaning cycles per month. The increased cleaning cycles increase the energy yield of the solar plant by 3-5%, which is a significant improvement. Firstgreen shares the benefits with the client after achieving the expected savings based on an agreed performance measurement method.
Firstgreen does not charge any upfront cost from the client for deploying the robotic cleaning system. Instead, they propose to share 50% of the revenue due to increased yield. The increased yield is estimated based on the previous year’s yield for the same month, and the client shares the increased monthly yield based on the actual savings achieved. A correction of annual module degradation of 0.7% per year is applied to the yield estimation.
Let’s take a look at the sample calculation sheet provided by Firstgreen to understand how the shared savings model works. The sheet shows the existing monthly yield of the plant, the improved yield due to the robotic cleaning system, the incremental generation due to robotic cleaning, the net revenue gain considered at Rs. 5/kWh, and Firstgreen’s share under the shared savings program.
For instance, in January, the existing monthly yield was 140734 kWh, and the improved yield due to the robotic cleaning system was 144956 kWh. Therefore, the incremental generation due to robotic cleaning was 4222 kWh. The net revenue gain considered at Rs. 5/kWh was Rs. 21110, and Firstgreen’s share under the shared savings program was 50% of that, which is Rs. 10555.
The total incremental generation due to robotic cleaning for the year was 46875 kWh, and the net revenue gain considered at Rs. 5/kWh was Rs. 234376. Firstgreen’s share under the shared savings program was 50% of that, which is Rs. 117188.
By adopting the shared savings program offered by Firstgreen, clients can not only save money but also save water, as the robotic cleaning is done using a dry cleaning method. The program offers a win-win situation for both the client and the service provider, as it provides a more efficient and cost-effective method for solar plant cleaning while ensuring a higher energy yield and improved plant output.
|Month||Existing monthly yield||Improved yield by 3%||Increamental generation due to robotic cleaning||Net revenue gain considered @ Rs.5/kWh||Share of Firstgreen under the shared savings program (50%)|