RWE, one of the world’s leading companies for renewable energy, has commissioned its first floating solar project – a 6.1MWp power plant installed in the Dutch province of Noord-Brabant.

The project consists of around 13,400 solar panels that float on a lake near the Amer power plant in Geertruidenberg, and represents the latest of three solar installations at the Amer plant.

The solar panels float on a lake whose waters were once used as cooling water. The lake has not been used for that purpose for many decades, has no direct connection with the nearby Amer river and is therefore ideally suited for floating panels, RWE said.

To prevent the panels from drifting away in strong winds and colliding with the surrounding dike, they are anchored at 104 points to 52 concrete blocks sunk onto the bottom of the lake. These blocks weigh 4.6 tons each.

A total of 25 kilometers of cable has been used to connect the panels electrically to the shore. The produced electricity is fed into the powers station’s grid, RWE confirmed.

Roger Miesen, CEO of RWE generation and country chair for the Netherlands, said: ”With Solar Park Amer we demonstrate that it is possible to turn conventional asset sites into landmark projects that promote innovative solutions for a sustainable electricity system. The Netherlands are one of RWE’s strategic core markets and we continue to contribute to the growth of renewable energy, as well as to CO2 free, flexible capacity in the country.”

Katja Wünschel, CEO onshore wind and solar Europe & Australia at RWE Renewables, added: ““We are dedicated to developing and implementing innovative solutions to advance the use of renewable energy. Our Amer floating photovoltaic (PV) project is the first of its kind for RWE, adding a new, promising technology to our portfolio. Realizing and operating this project deepens our knowledge about technical possibilities of floating PV, such as scalability and energy output.”

With the commissioning of the floating project, the total capacity of Solar Park Amer has increased from 0.5 to 9 MWp. This is enough power to supply 2,300 average Dutch households, according to RWE.

Source: Offshore Energy