Cochin International Airport, India’s Fully Solar Powered Airport Is World’s First
The Cochin International Airport, the first airport in the world to operate completely on solar power, will double its capacity from present 13.1 MW. A decision in this regard was taken at director board meeting of the CIAL chaired by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy here today. Foreseeing that the power usage in the airport will be doubled with the completion of the new international terminal, the board decided to increase the solar electricity generation capacity.
Back in 2013, an airport in the southern Indian state of Kerala installed a small energy plant with 400 panels as part of a pilot scheme to clean up its energy use. Two years later the program proved so successful the Cochin airport installed a staggering 46,000 panels, and after three months of full reliance on solar power the green-powered site is going from strength to strength.
Located in the southern Indian state Kerala, Cochin International Airport originally installed 400 panels as part of a clean energy pilot initiative. Two years on and the scheme proved so successful, a staggering 40,000 panels were built and the site is now fully powered by solar energy. The 12 megawatt solar plant provides a huge amount of energy and could power around 10,000 homes off the back of all those panels.
Taking around six months to construct, the oceans of green energy wasn’t particularly cheap either (costs are estimated at £6.28 billion), but the airport already has high hopes for the future – including a brand new expansion. CIA is planning a new international wing, but considering the airport is already using every drop of power from its ocean of solar panels, it’s going to need to add plenty more to support an even bigger site.
The scheme has proved so successful other airports across India and Liberia have expressed an interest in following a similar setup.
A CIAL release said it would help the airport retain its tag as the fully solar-powered airport in the world. Scripting a new chapter, the CIAL in August this year became the first airport in the world to operate completely on solar power.
Chandy had inaugurated the 12 MWp solar power plant, comprising 46,150 solar panels laid across 45 acres near the cargo complex. It added to the 1.1 MW power already being generated.