KOCHI: The first airport in the world to be run entirely on solar power is geared up to register another first. Solar carport, or car parking bay with roof-top solar panels, will be another jewel in the crown of the Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL) in Nedumbassery.
A first-of-its-kind initiative in the nation, the solar carport has been laid out over 2.25 lakh square feet, with an institutional capacity of generating 2.7 MW power from around 8,500 solar panels. Once completed, it will accommodate 14,000 cars at a time.
The facility to generate 1 MW power will be up and running on Saturday when Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan inaugurates the first phase of CIAL’s upgrade to its solar power generation.
The carport will provide approximately 11,000 units a day in the first phase, work on which had begun last November. The parking bay will also have a facility to recharge electric cars. The airport’s phased upgradation project envisages raising the existing 15.5 MW solar power generation to 21.5 MW.
The immediate necessity for renewed power is the commissioning of ‘Terminal Three’. The existing solar power project is generating 62,000 units per day.
However, the authorities have decided to generate 6 MW additional solar power to meet the burgeoning requirement. In the first phase of upgradation, 1 MW power will be generated from the solar carport, 2 MW power from the solar panels laid across two acres on the southern side of the airport and 3 MW from the solar panels set up in three acres near the airport hanger. A total of Rs 30 crore as been set aside for the purpose.