India: First solar-powered airport in Cochin

The Cochin International Airport, situated in the southern Indian state of Kerela, has a 12 MW solar plant on its premises. Combined with the existing PV plants already up and running, the plant, installed by CIAL (Cochin International Airport Limited), will meet the daily electricity needs of the airport at present, generating 50,000 to 60,000 kWh per day.

CIAL already ventured into solar PV with a 100 kW PV installation on the roof of its arrival terminal block in March last year. This was installed by Vikram Solar and is a grid-connected system. CIAL then installed a 1 MW PV plant partly on the rooftop and partly on ground at the Aircraft Maintenance Hangar facility. This installation was developed by Emmvee.

The new 12 MW PV plant has been developed by Bosch near the airport’s cargo complex on a 45-acre plot of land. The more than 46,000 PV modules were supplied by Renesola and inverters by ABB India. The total cost, according to The Economic Times of India, is thought to be around US$9.54 million. The project was developed in six months and the electricity produced will be fed into the Kerela State Electricity Board’s power grid. The airport will then buy the power equivalent from the utility.