AAI to install solar panels near the main runway at Chennai airport

solar project

In a bid to reduce the use of power from the grid the Airports Authority of India (AAI) is reportedly planning to install solar panels near the main runway at Chennai airport.

The contractor that bagged the tender issued last year has started the installation process of the panels on an 8.58-acre land, identified in the northern corner of the main runway, close to the Pallavaram side reports ET citing an official.

Once installed, the solar panels will generate around 6.5MWp of power which will be connected to the grid.

The project which is part of AAI’s ‘Go Green’ initiative is estimated to cost Rs 44crore.

An official speaking to the publication said that the power generated from the panels will be used for terminals and a balance of 11KV will be supplied to the grid.

The airport already has a roof-top solar plant at the cargo complex which generates 5MW power.

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AAI initially planned to install solar panels at different locations in the operational areas; so far only one location has been identified as the authorities are also looking at large-scale sourcing of solar power from a company. This is expected to be in the range of 12MW to 20MW.

According to the report this was planned because the AAI headquarters found that buying solar power may be economical than installing solar panels in the operational area as it requires extensive study of the land, its reflective potential and its possible interference with flight operations. However, the tender process which was started early last year, could not be completed. Bid opening dates have been extended.