NTPC has started power generation from India’s largest floating solar power plant at Kayamkulam in Kerala, on 10 March, 2017. The 100 kWp floating solar generation plant, largest of its kind in India, was indigenously developed at Rajiv Gandhi Combined Cycle Power Plant (RGCCPP) in Kerala’s Kayamkulam district.
Solar panels mounted on floating boards that hold them in place saves land usage and has been found to be efficient than the ones installed on land. These floating platform were indigenously developed by NTPC Energy Technology Research Alliance, the R&D arm of NTPC Ltd, in collaboration with Central Institute of Plastic Engineering & Technology (CIPET), Chennai and a patent has been applied for.
The system was installed by Swelect Energy Systems Ltd, Chennai with support from NETRA & NTPC Kayamkulam station in a short span of 22 days.
NTPC said the following,
"Such systems are fast emerging as an alternative to conventional ground mounted photovoltaic systems which are land intensive. It has various benefits like conserving water through reduction of evaporation, increased generation due to cooling effect on the panels and requires lesser installation time than conventional land mounted ones.”
These could be installed on saline water environments too. Installation potential of such type of systems in India is huge because of abundance of water bodies. Within NTPC, the potential is approximately 800 MW in various reservoirs of existing stations.
NTPC has already started working on scaling up such type of system for MW scale installation.