BayWa r.e. looking at up 500MW of floating PV as project development prices decrease

Nov 10, 2020 12:27 PM ET
  • BayWa r.e. will include 500MW of added floating solar in the coming years in a move to make use of raising need for the technology amongst possession proprietors.
BayWa r.e. looking at up 500MW of floating PV as project development prices decrease
Image: BayWa r.e.

Having already finished 6 floating PV farms in the Netherlands-- consisting of the 27.4 MWp Bomhofsplas center that was offered previously in the year-- the German renewables designer currently looks to construct out its capacity as market criteria as well as standards advancement.

BayWa r.e. entered the floating solar room in 2018 with the procurement of a 70% stake in Dutch company GroenLeven as well as its project pipeline. The offer, integrated with the development of its very own base ideal for large-scale setups, provided the business "the possibility to really take off with floating PV", Toni Weigl, product supervisor for floating PV at BayWa r.e., told PV Tech.

The scalable option based on ZimFloat, created in collaboration with engineering company Zimmermann PV-Stahlbau, implied "it was economically viable to understand floating PV projects", Weigl said.

Because of the east-west arrangement, the service is said to feature a high module tenancy rate to lower the amount of surface area water needed. Weigl claimed it is also "a lot more stable as well as consequently easier to keep over the lifetime of the system".

Information of the 6 floating PV projects BayWa r.e. has actually completed are as complies with:

Project Capacity (MWp) Completion date
Bomhofsplas 27.4 March 2020
Plegt Vos-Kloosterhaar 15.7 October 2020
Sekdoorn 14.5 October 2019
Nij Beets 13.5 August 2020
Tynaarlo 8.4 July 2019
Weperpolder 2.1 December 2018

A 2018 report from the World Bank as well as Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore claimed that while adequate large projects have been applied to show the commercial practicality of floating PV, the complexity of making as well as running facilities on water is a barrier to the technology's release. Procedures and upkeep (O&M), mooring problems and also electrical safety and security were among the hurdles the report claimed the market needed to overcome.

However, Weigl said that structure on water indicates there is no demand for some O&M costs associated with ground-mounted PV, including yard cutting, burglary security as well as video monitoring. "We have an extremely secure and really easy-to-maintain system. We have really lower operational upkeep prices in our floating PV systems compared to ground-mounted PV," he included.

According to BayWa r.e., the benefits of floating solar projects-- such as reducing water dissipation as well as somewhat simple installation and also O&M-- offset their greater installment prices compared to ground-mounted planetary systems of the same size. "With every (floating) plant we are developing, the prices are dropping additionally," Weigl claimed.

Sector joins to establish floating PV criteria

In spite of forecasting that floating solar growths are readied to gain grip in the coming years, a recent study from Fitch Solutions suggests a lack of expertise and also standards in areas such as environmental influences and laws have made floating projects "relatively high danger".

This is just one of the variables that a collaborative industry project launched by DNV GL seeks to deal with alongside 14 market players, including BayWa r.e. The advised technique will offer an acknowledged requirement based on a list of technical demands for developing secure and also dependable and floating solar projects.

Weigl said it is necessary that the total floating solar worth chain can function well together. "These standards will provide some criteria on the general project itself as well as not just on particular parts," he stated.

" I believe the advised best method will most definitely enhance the comparability between various systems and supply some good standards and also requirements of exactly how to understand projects."

It is likewise wished the guidelines will certainly aid developers by providing more confidence for investors seeking to finance floating projects-- a concern that BawWa r.e. has efficiently been able to navigate. On the other hand, with the recent sale of its Sekdoorn, Tynaarlo and also Bomhofsplas solar farms, Weigl claimed the company has had the ability to make use of the "significant appetite" from financiers looking for to get the company's completed floating solar projects.

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