SINGAPORE: The construction of a 60 megawatt-peak (MWp) floating solar photovoltaic (PV) system on Tengeh Reservoir has begun, announced national water agency PUB and Sembcorp Floating Solar Singapore on Tuesday (Aug 18).
The system will enable Singapore to integrate green technology with water treatment, with enough clean energy generated to power PUB’s local water treatment plants when the project begins full commercial operations in 2021.
This will offset 7 per cent of PUB's energy needs, said the announcement.
“With this floating solar power plant, which we believe to be one of the largest in the world, PUB takes a big step towards enduring energy sustainability in water treatment," said Ng Joo Hee, chief executive of PUB.
"Solar energy is plentiful, clean and green, and is key to reducing PUB’s and also Singapore’s carbon footprint.”
DESIGNED FOR SINGAPORE'S CLIMATE
Touted to be the first of its kind in the region, the system was designed and selected based on Singapore’s climate conditions, said PUB and Sembcorp.
This in turn maximises energy generation, minimises environmental and water quality impact, and is durable enough to last 25 years, its service lifespan.
For example, double-glass PV modules were chosen instead of the single-glass variant commonly used for rooftops installations to enhance durability in a wet and humid environment.
The PV modules are supported by certified food-grade quality high density polyethylene (HDPE) floats which are UV-resistant to prevent degradation from the intense sunlight exposure.
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The system is backed by a digital monitoring platform which tracks environmental factors and detects abnormalities for pre-emptive troubleshooting. Staff members are able to monitor it remotely via a mobile application, allowing maintenance teams to be deployed when required.
SOLAR ENERGY TARGET
In October last year, the Singapore government increased its target for solar energy, aiming to harness enough power from the sun to meet the annual needs of about 350,000 households - representing 4 per cent of the country's total electricity demand.
"As Singapore’s leading renewable energy player, Sembcorp is committed to helping our communities live more sustainably," said the group president and CEO of Sembcorp Industries, Wong Kim Yin, in Tuesday's press release.
"This large-scale floating solar platform, which features the deployment of advanced technological and system innovations, will also enhance Singapore’s global position in renewable energy production.”