BHEL commissions floating and canal top solar panels for better land use

21 June 2021

By Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd @BHEL_India



With the aim of growing solar capacity to 100GW by 2022, India faces challenges on multiple fronts. The main challenge in building solar farms is finding the land, which is relatively expensive in India and difficult to acquire. India’s high population density further puts pressure on the land. Canal top solar and floating solar are some of the innovative solutions that not only reduce carbon emissions but also save land and water. Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) has been actively working in these areas.


Floating solar

BHEL is India’s biggest floating solar engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) player. Recently, BHEL has commissioned a 5.4 MWp floating solar plant in West Bengal – one of the largest in the country. It is built upon a raw water pond at the Sagardighi Thermal Power Project owned by the West Bengal Power Development Corp Ltd (WBPDCL) in the Murshidabad district. The plant uses a solar array consisting of 16,880 320Wp BHEL-made PV modules over an area of 10.22 hectares.


This plant will supply competitively priced electricity to about 1,000 homes, avoid 5,838 tonnes of CO2 emissions and can save over 48 million litres of water from evaporation.

BHEL designed floating SPV power plants can be installed on city lakes, reservoirs of hydel power plants, and drinking or irrigation water ponds. The design uses recyclable, UV and corrosion-resistant HDPE (high-density polyethylene) floats. Presently 219 MWp floating SPV plants are under execution.


Canal top solar

BHEL has also commissioned India’s first seasonal-tilt canal top SPV plant of 1 MW capacity at Bhimavaram, Andhra Pradesh. Power generation is about 10 per cent more than a fixed Module Mounting Arrangement (MMA). The patented design of BHEL makes optimum use of canal top space with a tiltable design. The Module Mounting Structure (MMS) is a unique design based on the innovative concept of merging cable trays, walkways, fencing and illumination posts into the girder – reducing civil works and increasing design viability.