Joe (public) versus the Volcano – how will volcanic ash disrupt solar panels

If it weren’t for the Icelandic volcanic eruption paralysing european air travel – pretty much everybody knows (or has heard of) someone affected by the travel disruption, then it’s probable that the UK Election would have grabbed all the headlines.

Deities work in mysterious ways indeed.

Of course the real question on everybody’s lips has been – “Will the volcanic ash spewing forth affect solar panel energy output?”

I’ve quoted a couple of sources below with links to the actual web pages.

Have a read, discuss it with others and if you have any further insights or articles you’ve come across, then please share a link to them here.

“European oil, gas and electricity production is not expected to suffer. Some helicopter flights to and from oil rigs in the Norwegian Sea have resumed; the effect on solar power plants is unlikely to be greater than the impact from any other passing cloud, while wind power industry sources said cold volcanic dust on wind turbines should not cause any problems.”
source –

“On an index of climate change since 1980 run by the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme, conditions got worse every year except 1982, 1992 and 1996. It links the dips to volcanic fallout from Chichon, Pinatubo and Monserrat in 1996.”
source – TVNZ

“Altered weather patterns worsened the effects of the eruption by causing ash clouds to stay over Europe for a longer period, according to Christophe Cassou and Eric Guilyardi of the European Centre for Research and Advanced Training in Scientific Computation in Toulouse, France.”
source – finchannel

photo credit: rednewport

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