Construction work begins on 24.5MWp floating solar project in Austria

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The project is scheduled to be operational in spring 2023. Image: EVN/Daniela Matejschek.

Austrian utility EVN and renewables developer ECOwind are building what they said will be Central Europe’s largest floating PV system in Grafenwörth, Austria.

Scheduled to be operational in spring 2023, the project was built under the banner of the joint project company EVN-ECOwind Sonnenstromgeneration and will have an output of 24.5MWp.

ECOwind managing director Johann Janker praised the value of the technology in using otherwise purposeless space to generate power, whilst EVN CEO Stefan Szyszkowitz spoke of the company’s PV expansion goals and said it will reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 60% by 2034.

As a subsidiary of German renewables company BayWa r.e., ECOwind’s first floating PV installation is set against a backdrop of similar projects. In July of 2021,  BayWa r.e. installed what it said were the largest floating PV projects outside of Asia in the Netherlands, the 41.1MWp Sellingen park and the 29.8MWp Uivermeertjes project. Their daughter company is now making forays into the same new technology.

In September last year, PV Tech Premium featured an article by BayWa r.e’s head of product management for floating PV which posited findings from the World Bank saying that if 10% of Europe’s manmade freshwater reservoirs housed floating PV, a conservative estimate puts potential generation at 200GWp.

Whilst Asia continues to set the pace for floating PV installations, the rest of the world is set to see growth as well.

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