EGAT Releases the First Set of Floating Solar Panels for Thailand’s Largest Hydro-Floating Solar Hybrid Project at Sirindhorn Dam

PVTIME - EGAT released the first set of floating solar panels for Thailand’s largest Hydro-floating Solar Hybrid Project at Sirindhorn Dam with a capacity of 45 MW and aims to create power system security from clean energy using hybrid systems. It is scheduled for commercial operation around the middle of 2021 and will become a new tourist attraction for Ubon Ratchathani Province.

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On November 29, 2020, Mr. Sarit Witoon, Governor of Ubon Ratchathani Province chaired the “First Buoy Placing Ceremony” and released the first set of floating solar panels for the Hydro-floating Solar Hybrid Project at Sirindhorn Dam. Mr. Prasertsak Cherngchawano, EGAT Deputy Governor - Power Plant Development and Renewable Energy, Mr. Chatchai Mawong, EGAT Director of Hydro and Renewable Energy Power Plant Development Division, Mr. Sanong Malaikwan, Sirindhorn District Chief Officer, Mr. Peradach Patanachan, Senior Executive Vice President - Legal of B. Grimm Power PCL, Mr. Hou Jiaqi, Head of International Business Development of China Energy Engineering Group Shanxi Electric Power Engineering Co., Ltd. (CEEC), and EGAT executives and officers joined the ceremony at Sirindhorn Dam, Ubon Ratchathani Province.

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Mr. Sarit Witoon, Governor of Ubon Ratchathani Province said, having a renewable energy pilot project that is essential for the country is an important step for Ubon Ratchathani Province. The Hydro-floating Solar Hybrid Project at Sirindhorn Dam will be a model project for developing renewable energy which will not only create stability for renewable energy by using hybrid energy systems but also promote Ubon Ratchathani Province to become an energy learning center for students, scholars, and the general public. The project will also be developed into a new tourist attraction for the province to increase revenue for the community so it can become sustainably self-reliant.

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Mr. Prasertsak Cherngchawano, EGAT Deputy Governor - Power Plant Development and Renewable Energy said, as the main organization responsible for maintaining power system security for the country, EGAT gives importance to developing renewable energy in accordance with the country’s energy policy. Therefore, the Hydro-floating Solar Hybrid Project at Sirindhorn Dam was developed by combining various types of renewable energy to solve the limits of renewable energy and to supply power at the fullest potential with stability. Mr. Prasertsak Cherngchawano thanked EGAT executives and officers, the contract company, government agencies, and the community who helped the operation of the project to run smoothly and reaffirmed that EGAT is determined to create power system security for the better life of Thais.

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Mr. Chatchai Mawong, EGAT Director of Hydro and Renewable Energy Power Plant Development Division said, in accordance with the Power Development Plan B.E. 2561 - 2580 (PDP2018), EGAT will increase the proportion of renewable energy by developing 16 Hydro-floating Solar Hybrid Projects in the area of 9 EGAT dams with the total capacity of 2,725 MW. The first pilot project at Sirindhorn Dam with a capacity of 45 MW is a system which combines “hydropower” and “solar power,” or “Hybrid System.” The project uses an energy management system (EMS) in order to supply energy continuously at the highest efficiency, reduce the uncertainty of renewable energy which fluctuates according to the weather, and enhance power system security. It is the first and largest Hydro-floating Solar Hybrid Project in Thailand. The project is now 66 percent complete and is scheduled for commercial operation around the middle of 2021.

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The Hydro-floating Solar Hybrid Project at Sirindhorn Dam uses double glass solar panels which are suitable for installing on water surface, made of glass on the top and bottom, highly resistant to moisture, and will not contaminate the water; therefore, they are safe and efficient for electricity generation. The mooring system is made from HDPE (High Density Polyethylene) which is the same material used in water supply pipes and resistant to degradation from ultraviolet light; therefore, it is not dangerous to aquatic animals or the environment. Most importantly, the project helps reduce CO2 by around 47,000 tons/year. Moreover, EGAT has built a natural walkway of 415 meters long to view the floating solar panels at a high viewpoint. The project will become a new tourist attraction for Ubon Ratchathani Province which will also help stimulate the local economy.

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