Sun’Agri


Description

Sun’Agri, a pioneer of dynamic agriculture, and itk a French leader in agri-intelligence and publisher of agronomic decision support tools (DST), are industrial and commercial partners for the adaptation of agriculture to climate change.

Since 2009, Sun’Agri has been working on dynamic agrivoltaism and was joined in 2016 by itk, an agtech company that is expanding internationally, to jointly develop the photovoltaic panel control system, ensuring maximum benefits of shading on crop yield and quality.

Through itk’s experience in agronomic modelling, and his expertise in real-time monitoring of the water cycle and nutrients in plant growth, the louvers are controlled according to the shading and water requirements of each of the crops concerned (vineyards or orchards, greenhouse market gardening and field crops).

The Sun’Agri research programme is now in its third phase and brings together Sun’R, itk, INRAE (INRA & IRSTEA), and Photowatt.


Advancement

55

What is agrivoltaism ?

With global warming, agriculture is facing new challenges. Dynamic agrivoltaism responds to this paradigm shift with its intelligent system at the service of cultures.
Sun’R, a major player in photovoltaics in France, has been developing the dynamic agri-voltaism solution since 2007 through its Sun’Agri program. The Sun’Agri solution consists of a system of agricultural shade (or blinds) equipped with orientable photovoltaic panels whose steering takes into account the needs of the crops growing below.
This is a major technological breakthrough that leads agriculture to an unmatched level of control and regulation of crop microclimate.
Dynamic agriculture protects crops while producing renewable electricity in a competitive manner, allowing crops to adapt to climate change.

The Sun’Agri 3’s objectives

The development of growth models is fuelled by the results of the researchers’ experiments on 4 experimental devices dedicated to vineyards, orchards, greenhouse market gardening and field crops.
The objectives set for this programme are many:


Demonstrating the benefits of dynamic agriculture for crops

in real-life situations, with a dozen demonstrators associated with the program.

Extending plant growth patterns

to more cultivated species.

Improve the efficiency of the technical solution

by offering new services to farmers and cost-efficient electricity, for example by developing complementary products (bifacial panels, dynamic agrivoltaic greenhouse, anti-hail nets, etc.).

Develop agricultural technical standards and best practices

to ensure a harmonious development of this sector and that the general interest is safeguarded.

Project news

July 2020

New thesis: Noé Savalle Gloire works on greenhouse market gardening

Noé Savalle Gloire joined the project as part of hir thesis: « Analysis and modelling of the effect of microclimate and shading on yield and fruit growth precursors ».


« This thesis allows me to combine my passions for modeling, tree crops and scientific research with my ecological convictions. I can act concretely for a more sustainable agricultural system, within a company in accordance with my values and with a competent and human scientific team »
Noé Savalle Gloire, in thesis at itk's Agro Pole
Noé Savalle Gloire, in thesis at itk's Agro Pole
November 2019

Arturo Ramos Fuentes joins the project for his thesis on field crops

The thesis of Arturo Ramos Fuentes is entitled « Modelling of field crops for the optimization of irrigation in agrivoltaic context ».


« I decided to embark on this adventure because I am very interested in agronomic modeling and especially water resources. I find agri-intelligence really innovative and all the opportunities it can offer farmers. Moreover, I really wanted to integrate itk, a company with a great potential for international development »

Isaac Arturo Ramos Fuentes, in thesis at itk's Agro Pole
Isaac Arturo Ramos Fuentes, in thesis at itk's Agro Pole
April 2018

Perrine and Benjamin join the Sun Agri 3 project as part of their theses

Perrine Juillon is interested in tree crops through her thesis « Analysis and modelling of the effect of shading on physiology, growth, apple yield and fruit quality ».

Benjamin Tiffon Terrade’s thesis focuses on winegrowing: « Analysis and modelling of the effect of dynamic shading on vine development and grape quality ».


« This topic of research on agrivoltaism immediately convinced me; it combines my interest in plant experimentation with my commitment to the energy transition. My CIFRE thesis with ITK also allows me to discover a company that suits me: close to its employees and works for the world of tomorrow. »
Perrine Juillon, in thesis at itk's Agro Pole
Perrine Juillon, in thesis at itk's Agro Pole
« Completing my thesis as part of the Sun’Agri 3 project between itk and LEPSE is a great opportunity. Given the current climate and its known risks to the wine sector, my work would help to highlight how and why dynamic agrivoltaism can protect and improve wine production. »
Benjamin Tiffon-Terrade, in thesis at itk's Agro Pole
Benjamin Tiffon-Terrade, in thesis at itk's Agro Pole
2017 - 2022

SunAgri 3

Large-scale extension and demonstration programme in real-life conditions of agriculture.

2013 - 2017

SunAgri 2s

Development of the software and hardware base, and implementation of the first agrivoltaic model on lettuce and vines.

2009 - 2012

SunAgri 1

Basic research and proof of concept.

The partners


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