• Sri Lanka’s Kilinochchi is now home to a floating solar power plant that has a capacity of 42 kW
  • The project was executed by Norway’s Current Solar ASA with the support of Equinor and Innovation Norway
  • According to local media reports, it was a result of collaboration between the Jaffna university and Western Norway University of Applied Sciences that started way back in 2017

A 42 kW floating solar power plant has come online in Sri Lanka as the country’s first such project to become operational. This floating solar project is the result of a collaboration between the University of Jaffna and the Western Norway University of Applied Sciences (HVL) that started in 2017, reported local media.

The facility is stationed at Jaffna university’s Faculty of Engineering in Ariviyal Nagar, Kilinochchi and is supported by the Royal Norwegian Embassy, Colombo. It was inaugurated by Norwegian Ambassador to Sri Lanka and the Maldives, Trine Jøranli Eskedal on January 24, 2020.

Norway government’s agency that promotes innovation called Innovation Norway and state-backed energy group Equinor helped local Norwegian solar energy firm Current Solar AS to bring the project to fruition.

The project was installed as part of the Capacity Building and Establishment of Research Consortium Project.

In March 2019, the Sri Lankan government announced a 100 MW floating solar power plant to come up on Maduru Oya Reservoir under a joint venture with the Canadian Solar Institute (see 100 MW Floating PV Project In Sri Lanka). Back then, Sri Lanka newspaper Daily Financial Times (FT) had reported that the 100 MW floating PV project is scheduled to be completed by the end of September 2020.

Between 2019 and 2025, Sri Lanka aims to add 1,564 MW of total solar power capacity in the form of 1,034 MW of large scale solar, 330 MW of rooftop solar and 200 MW of floating solar power projects, under its Renewable Energy Development Plan Phase I 2019-2025.

According to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), till the end of 2018, Sri Lanka’s cumulative renewable energy capacity reached 2,092 MW with hydropower accounting for 1,741 MW and solar 160 MW, among others.