Portugal’s 5 MW Floating Solar Plant Online

EDP Inaugurates ‘Largest’ Floating Solar Plant In Europe On A Reservoir

Portugal’s 5 MW Floating Solar Plant Online

EDP says the Alqueva floating solar project in Portugal (in the picture) is a kind of ‘living laboratory’ bringing together hydro, solar PV and energy storage technologies to be tested under real conditions. Its success will enable the model to be leveraged in projects elsewhere. (Photo Credit: EDP Energias de Portugal)

  • EDP has inaugurated its 5 MW floating solar plant in Portugal with 1 MW/2 MWh BESS capacity
  • It is designed to generate 7.5 GWh clean energy annually with the help of around 12,000 solar panels
  • The project is located on Alto Rabagão reservoir in Portugal’s Alqueva region using Isigenere floats

Energias de Portugal SA (EDP) has commissioned what it calls as the largest floating solar plant in all of Europe with 5 MW capacity, located on a reservoir in Portugal’s Alqueva paired with a 1 MW battery energy storage capacity (BESS) having around 2 MWh storage capacity.

With some 12,000 solar panels installed, the project is expected to generate close to 7.5 GWh of clean energy annually, that’s enough to cater to approximately 1,500 families in Portel and Moura regions, it added. Back in 2019, the company had been seeking government approval for a 4 MW floating solar project for the location (see EDP Planning 4 MW Floating PV Project).

“Alqueva will thus become a kind of living laboratory, by allowing the complementarity between dispatchable (hydroelectric) and non-dispatchable (photovoltaic) renewable energy production technologies to be tested, as well as long-term energy storage technologies (pumping) and short-lived (battery),” explained EDP. “The pumping system allows to use wind and solar energies, in periods of lower consumption, to pump water from the reservoir and, in this way, reuse it to produce a new hydroelectric power, increasing the flexibility of renewable energy.”

The project on Alto Rabagão reservoir uses floating structures manufactured by Spain’s Isigenere using an ‘innovative material based on a new cork composite’ that EDP claims allows for 30% reduction in the CO2 footprint of these floats. The company said the success of this solar plant enables it to leverage other projects in new geographies.

According to the management, the new floating solar project is ‘in line with regulatory changes ongoing in Portugal’ that will further facilitate solar PV auctions and hybridization of energy projects.

In April 2022, EDP’s renewable energy arm EDP Renewables (EDPR) made news when it won 70 MVA grid connection capacity in Portugal’s contracts for difference (CfD) based 1st floating solar auction for a negative tariff of €-4.00 per MWh. This capacity will allow the company to deploy 70 MW floating solar, an additional 14 MW solar and 70 MW hybrid wind capacity for which it will pay the electrical system this amount per MWh and sell power generated by the additional capacity on the market (see €4.00/MWh Floating Solar Tariff In Portugal).

About The Author

Anu Bhambhani

Anu Bhambhani is the Senior News Editor of TaiyangNews

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