Following the inauguration of a 45-acre, 12 MWp solar power plant, India’s Cochin International Airport is the world’s first fully solar-powered airport.
Dignitaries were on hand as airport authorities flipped the switch on more than 46,150 newly installed solar panels, which will produce an estimated 50,000 to 60,000 units of electricity daily. Each year, the airport could produce up to 18 million units of electricity, enough to power 10,000 homes.
Cochin first dabbled in solar power in March 2013, when authorities installed a 100 kWp solar power plant on the roof of the airport’s terminal building; another 1 MWp installation atop a maintenance hangar followed shortly thereafter. Together, the two plants are estimated to have already cut carbon dioxide emissions by 550MT.
With the addition of the newest plant, authorities say that the facility will be completely “power neutral.”
Solar panels at Cochin Intl Airport
“Over the next 25 years, this green power project will avoid carbon dioxide emissions from coal fired power plants by more than 3 lakh metric tons, which is equivalent to planting 3 million trees,” authorities said in a statement.
Any surplus power produced will be pushed back into the local grid, Engadget reports.
Cochin is the seventh busiest airport in India by passenger load, ferrying almost 7 million people in the past year.