Masdar and Indonesia company sign deal for largest floating solar PV plant

Masdar IndonesiaIndonesian power company PT Pembangkitan Jawa-Bali (PT PJB), a subsidiary of the state electricity company Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN), and Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar), have signed a project development agreement (PDA) for the world’s largest floating solar photovoltaic (PV) power plant

With a capacity of 200MW, the plant will cover an area of 225 ha atop the Cirata Reservoir in the West Java province of Indonesia. The 6,000-ha Cirata Reservoir already powers a 1GW hydroelectric power station.

The agreement was signed in Jakarta by Iwan Agung Firstantara, president director of PLN, and Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, CEO of Masdar.

“PJB is excited and looking forward to working with Masdar,” said Firstantara. “We believe this project development agreement is a milestone in the development of other floating PV solar power plants; this 200MW project will be the largest project of its kind in Indonesia and PJB-Masdar will be a pioneer of floating PV technology. Inshallah, developing this project will be a great success and a proud achievement for Indonesia.”

“Today’s signing marks the entry of Masdar into Southeast Asia and our first project in floating solar power,” said Masdar CEO Al Ramahi. “The agreement with PT PJB for the world’s largest floating solar power plant demonstrates Masdar’s ambition as a global renewable energy leader and the strength of our industry partnerships.”

One of the advantages of floating solar power in tropical countries like Indonesia is that it enables renewable energy development in forested regions generally unsuitable for conventional solar power. The successful deployment of the Cirata project paves the way for the installation of floating solar power on another 60 reservoirs across Indonesia.

The planned 200MW floating PV project will be mounted on 700,000 floats moored to the bed of the Cirata reservoir and connected by electrical cables to an onshore high-voltage substation. Besides producing clean power, the facility will provide shading against the sun, reducing evaporation from the reservoir and limiting the growth of algae.

According to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), Indonesia has the potential to produce more than 700 GW of renewable energy, including 532.6 GW of solar power.

Since 2006, Masdar has invested in renewable energy projects with a combined value of US$8.5bn; the company’s share of this investment is US$2.7bn. Masdar commercialises advanced technologies by deploying them at scale. 

Last year, a Masdar-led consortium was appointed to build the 800MW third phase of the Mohamed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai, quoting a record low price for solar power generation.

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