We *suggest* the researchers are being wildly over-optimistic here. Snow landing on solar panels and ruining their effectiveness seems like an obvious hazard, for example.
Other practical difficulties in mountainous environments are not hard to imagine either.
A trio of researchers at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne has found that solar panels could provide a lot more power for Switzerland than has been previously thought, says TechXplore.
In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Annelen Kahl, Jérôme Dujardin and Michael Lehning describe their feasibility study of solar panel use in mountainous Swiss regions using satellite data.
As part of Switzerland’s Swiss Energy Strategy 2050, the government has decreed that all of the country’s nuclear power plants will be phased out when their useful life has ended—and no new plants will be built to replace them.
Furthermore, all new power must come from renewable resources. Some might suggest this is a risky move, considering that currently, the country gets approximately 35 percent of its power from nuclear plants and just 5 percent from renewable resources.
But the country might have a previously unnoticed advantage—its high, snow-covered mountains. In this new effort, the researchers report evidence that such mountains could be used for generating a lot of electricity using solar panels.
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