Thailand solar farms

Thailand to construct world’s biggest floating solar farms

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Being second largest economy of Southeast Asia, Thailand is planning to build world’s largest solar farms. The project will be handled by State-run Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT).

The project would comprise 16 floating solar farms with combined capacity of more than 2.7 GW on nine hydroelectric dam reservoirs. The project reportedly, will be completed in 2037. Moreover, if the proposed projects are built then floating solar would account for one tenth of the country’s clean energy source as compared to just 1 percent of global solar capacity by 2050.

Floating plant to improve efficiency

The utility would not need to spend as much on groundwork as the plants are planned to be located at existing hydropower reservoirs fastening it into the grid and the system promises to improve the overall output of the hydropower plant.  The company is also preparing to use lithium-ion batteries to store the electricity produced by the floating plants.

The floating system is more expensive than land-based system by about 18 percent as it needs floats, anchorages, and more robust electric components but conversely, the projects avoid land use like forests and farmlands. Further, water can help in cooling of the solar panels and increase efficiency by 10 percent.

Biggest floating plant to be built by 2035

The eight of the proposed sixteen floating plants are designed to be larger than the existing floating solar plants. EGAT’s biggest farm is proposed to be a 325 MW farm at Sirikit Dam in Northern Thailand and is scheduled to be completed in 2035.

Bidding opening soon

Thepparat Theppitak, the Deputy Governor with the Utility, at the Head Office of EGAT said, “The hydro and solar power will be working in synergy in this project and using our existing assets and resources, we have studied and planned this project very carefully.”

He further added that the bidding for first floating solar project will begin soon and will be open to international companies with the budget set at 2 billion baht for a 45 MW farm at Sirindhorn Dam in northeast Thailand.



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