Singapore solar energy provider Sunseap says it has completed construction of a 5MW offshore floating solar PV farm in the Straits of Johor, the international border between Singapore and Malaysia.
Located just off the coast of Woodlands in the North Region of Singapore, the 5MW floating solar farm is said to be one of the world’s largest, consisting of 13,312 panels, 40 inverters and more than 30,000 floats.
Floating solar farms such as this one are a valuable demonstration of alternative ways land-scarce countries, such as Singapore, can still use solar as an integral part of their renewable energy strategy and grid mix.
“We are very pleased to announce the successful completion of Singapore and Sunseap’s first offshore floating photovoltaic system,” said Frank Phuan, co-founder and CEO of Sunseap Group.
“This is an important milestone for Sunseap as we believe that offshore space like the sea, reservoirs, lakes etc, offers exciting opportunities for land-scarce and densely populated cities to tap solar energy. They are places that are unobscured from the sun and with low risks of vandalism or theft.
“We believe that we at Sunseap have honed our experience and expertise in offshore floating PV systems from the completion of this project and are well placed to help our clients access this new frontier for solar energy.”
Construction was hampered during the global COVID-19 pandemic, and the Woodlands floating solar farm took close to a year to set up, as foreign workers hired by Sunseap’s contractors were unable to leave their dormitories.”
Singapore is proving to be a helpful test case for demonstrating the value of floating solar, as the sovereign island city-state is heavily urbanised and does not have a lot of spare land for solar development.
In August last year, Singapore’s PUB (Public Utilities Board) National Water Agency announced that, along with its subsidiary Sembcorp Industries, it had begun construction on the 60MW floating solar PV system on Tengeh Reservoir, on Singapore’s northern border with Malaysia.
When completed, the project will bring Singapore’s National Water Agency up to 100% renewable power and will generate enough clean energy to power PUB’s local water treatment plants. It will also be significantly larger than the Sunseap floating solar plant completed this week.