InvestorQ : Can you tell me about NTPC’s largest floating solar power plant in South India?
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Can you tell me about NTPC’s largest floating solar power plant in South India?

1 year ago

NTPC’s floating solar power plant with a capacity of 100 MW is expected to become operational in the state of Telangana in South India from May 2021. NTPC has been present in Ramagundam for a long time due to its thermal plant and the new floating solar power plant is coming up in the reservoir of its thermal power plant.

It is confirmed that this would be the largest floating solar plant in the country and has been set up at a cost of Rs.423 crore. This solar photo-voltaic project is spread over 450 acres and will house 4.50 lakh photovoltaic panels, with potential to expand capacity later. The plan is to set up such solar projects across all its thermal power plants in the country.

NTPC plans a total capacity of 450 MW in the Southern region of which 217 MW plants would be floating on water bodies. Apart from the 100 MW solar plant in Ramagundam, NTPC is also setting up a 92 MW floating solar unit at Kayamkulam gas plant in Kerala as well as a smaller 25 MW unit at Simhadri power plant near Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh.

NTPC sees huge potential in solar and these plans are in line with India’s commitment to attain the target of 175 GW of installed renewable energy capacity by 2022. This will be dominated by 100 GW of installed solar capacity. According to NTPC, setting up floating solar units on water bodies and huge reservoirs are more cost-effective than ground-mounted solar plants.

Solar plants are extremely land intensive as 5 acres of land is required for setting up 1 MW solar photo-voltaic plant on ground. This can overcome by the floating method. Also, such water bodies exert a cooling effect, which in turn performance of solar photovoltaic panels by up to 10%. That is a significant cost saving to plant owners and operators. It also results in reduced water evaporation and lower grid interconnection costs.