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[Photo of PV-powered navigational buoy, off coast of island of Bozcaada, Turkey.]

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Photovoltaic-powered Navigational Buoy
Bozcaada, Turkey

Photo: Michael Ross, RER Renewable Energy Research

The tiny Aegean island of Bozcaada-- not too far from the ancient city of Troy-- is a showcase for renewable energy technologies. In the main settlement, solar thermal systems adorn nearly every rooftop, and at the far end of the island, megawatt-class Enercon turbines tower over a PV-powered lighthouse.

Photovoltaic power supplies are used for navigational buoys all over the world--a testament to the reliability of the technology. The buoy requires only a small amount of energy every day. This is generated by the photovoltaic module (the slanted panels at the top) and stored in a battery for use during periods of darkness. The PV module can even be used as a sensor to determine when the light must be turned on.

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