Hydro + Floating Solar Power Plant: A Solution to offset Underperforming of Hydropower

Large-scale Floating Solar power plants (FSPP) is a suitable solution for offsetting the underperforming hydropower dams in places where the solar irradiance is good. In the study done by Michigan State University researchers, Brazil now has 12  GW of underperforming hydropower capacity.

Brazil’s total hydropower generation capacity currently stands at 109 GW while the country’s overall power generation capacity reached 161 GW. This means that Brazil relies highly on hydropower electricity generation, thus underperforming hydropower dams prompts to maximize load curtailments.

On the other hand, the government has plans to extend hydropower generation capacity up to 114.4 GW by 2023 in the Amazon region. This action raises both environmental and social concerns. 

As a suitable solution without the extra need for transmission lines and lands,  Large-scale FSPP can significantly contribute in improving the reliability of hydropower systems and minimize load curtailments by power generation during periods of high demand. In addition, a hydropower dam can play the role of a battery storage system for large-scale FSPP. The study also shows that large-scale FSPP increases 4% reliability of hydropower dam’s peak load annually.

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