Statkraft celebrates Albania’s first floating solar site entering commercial operations

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on reddit
Share on email
The Banja Reservoir is now home to both Statkraft’s 72MW hydropower asset and floating solar. Image: Statkraft

Statkraft has completed what it claims to be Albania’s first floating solar plant, energising a 500kW, first phase install at the base of a hydropower project on the country’s Banja reservoir.

With an installed capacity of 0.5MWp, the first unit is to be followed by three more, adding a further 1.5MWp to the project’s overall capacity. These are to be installed on the reservoir – which is also home to Statkraft’s 72MW hydropower plant – in the latter half of 2021.

Each unit consists of a floating ring and a thin membrane, an element that, alongside the cooling of the panels from the water below and the large area, the company said makes the concept unique.

The first of these units is made up of 1,536 panels covering 4,000 square meters, with a further 160 panels having been placed on land for comparison and documentation of the cooling effect of the floating panels.

The floating solar was developed in collaboration with Norwegian supplier Ocean Sun, which developed the technology for the asset, with the duo also bringing local contractor Doko on board.

The partnership between the two Norwegian firms was first announced in March 2019, with the total cost of the asset expected to be €2.3 million (US$2.8 million).

Rigela Gegprifti, Statkraft’s country head in Albania, said: “After the start of commercial operations of our Banja and Moglice hydropower plants, we are looking into further optimising these renewable assets.

“The Banja Floating Solar Plant is a concrete example for further integration of different resources of renewable energy.”

The volume of hydropower in the country, which represents around 95% of the country’s installed power capacity, alongside Albania boasting some of Europe’s highest number of sunshine hours per year makes it an attractive market for the development of floating solar.

A separate 12.9MW floating solar project is also currently under development in the country, with a €9.1 million loan provided by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development to a special-purpose vehicle established by state-owned utility Korporata Elektroenergjitike Shqiptare in April.

Read Next

June 11, 2021
Construction of a 10MW solar farm as part of the UK’s first hybrid solar PV, energy storage and wind site has officially begun.
PV Tech Premium
May 28, 2021
Grids continue to be a thorn in the side of European renewables as long connection queues and exorbitant fees risk stymying the clean energy transition. In this exclusive discussion from Large Scale Solar Europe 2021, we hear how grid operators are adapting to the demands of clean power generators.
PV Tech Premium
May 26, 2021
After receiving record-low prices in both its previous solar auctions, Portugal is now aiming to support the development of floating PV projects through its next tender process. Pedro Amaral Jorge, CEO of Portuguese renewable energy association APREN, talks to PV Tech about the prospects for the country’s solar sector.
May 26, 2021
Solar developer and distributor BayWa r.e. has acquired French wind and solar developer Enerpole to grow its presence in the country’s renewable energy sector.
May 24, 2021
Singapore’s recently unveiled Green Plan 2030 could kickstart the country’s emerging solar sector, according to a new report from analyst Fitch Solutions.
May 24, 2021
PV Tech Power volume 27 is now available to download, providing a comprehensive and detailed analysis of Europe’s solar market.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Solar Media Events
June 15, 2021
Solar Media Events
July 6, 2021
Solar Media Events
August 24, 2021
Solar Media Events, Upcoming Webinars
October 6, 2021