The floating solar plant in Ramagundam is in partnership with the World Bank. Alongside, a separate study is being assigned to study the project’s impact on the environment and social causes.
The floating solar panels can withstand storms and heavy waves with a capacity of 1600 MW. Additionally, the project is situated in the second largest river in India, the Godavari River in the Peddapalli district.
The biggest floating solar plant is going to be constructed by NTPC. This is not the first solar project by NTPC. Namely, there are on-ground solar projects in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu with capacities 230MWh and 217MWh respectively.
Besides, the corporation plans to have 25MW panels in Vishakapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, and also 92MW panels in Kerala. Furthermore, these smaller floating panels are not included in Ramagundam’s project.
Mr. Anand, the regional executive director gave his statement, “Floating solar plants is an opportunity to generate power with low cost as the land acquisition of at least five acres per megawatt of capacity involves huge fixed cost. Since there are a large number of major reservoirs in the Southern Region including in Telangana, it would be a huge opportunity to go for renewable energy in the floating solar method”
The solar plant is going to be a two 800 MW project, where the first 800 MW is expected to start running by January 2022. The other 800MW is to be started soon after three months from the first batch.
As per the evaluation, each unit is going to charge Rs. 0.03 which is costly compared to coal-based electricity. However, solar is worthwhile considering there is no need to invest in fuel.
In addition to NTPC’s partnership with the world bank, the financial aid from Finance Corporation and Power Grid is going to make the floating solar plant come alive.
The world’s largest floating solar
The world’s largest floating solar panels are going to be constructed in Singapore. This project can supply power to 3,50,000 homes after completion. The coverage of the water would be equal to 45 football pitches.
On the other side, such large solar panels could mean a change for marine space. Though the construction is set such that the fishermen and other boats can commute easily, it is a different space and we are yet to know the damage it could cause to the water bodies.
For this very reason, the research is going to be done by the World Bank, as the construction goes on. It would help enable tackling the challenges of solar panels on water bodies.