October 2 (Renewables Now) - Singapore’s National Water Agency PUB plans to hold tenders aimed at assessing the engineering and environmental potential for building 56.7 MWp of floating solar plants at two reservoirs in the Asian country.
The agency said on Thursday it is calling tenders for a 50-MWp floating photovoltaic (PV) plant on Tengeh Reservoir, which is planned to cover about one-third of the water reservoir's surface, and a 6.7-MWp floating facility on the Upper Peirce Reservoir. The smaller PV system is planned to cover only about 2% of the Upper Peirce Reservoir’s surface area. If constructed, the larger plant will feed its output to the national power grid, while the smaller system will directly supply Chestnut Avenue Water Works, which is one of the largest drinking water plants in the country.
PUB has already used the Tengeh Reservoir as a test-bed for a floating PV plant. Results from the tests, carried out in 2016, have shown that the installation outperformed the typical rooftop PV plant in Singapore due to the lower temperatures of water. The deployment of the facility did not have any observable effects to the quality of water and biodiversity at the reservoir, PUB said.
The Singaporean agency added that it will conduct comprehensive environmental studies, which will include the development of environmentally sensitive designs and construction processes at the two reservoirs, before taking a final decision on implementing the projects. According to it, water reservoirs are ideal for the deployment of solar power capacity in land-scarce countries like Singapore.