Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (Malaysia Airports), the operator and manager of Malaysia's 39 airports, and SunEdison (NYSE:SUNE), a leading solar technology manufacturer and provider of solar energy services, today announced the launch of Malaysia’s first airport solar power system at KL International Airport (KLIA). The 19 MW (megawatt) DC (direct current) system – the largest in Malaysia as of Interconnection - combines ground-mount, parking canopy and roof-top systems to maximize the return on investment and electricity savings while minimizing use of space.
The solar power systems are expected to save the airport approximately RM2.1 million (US$627,000) annually based on current energy costs.
Tan Sri Bashir Ahmad, Malaysia Airports’ Managing Director said that Malaysia has an ideal climate for solar power and therefore we are taking steps to generate clean energy which will be beneficial to everyone in Malaysia. “We are working with SunEdison to ensure our efforts produce the results we expect.”
SunEdison faced a significant challenge — generating the maximum amount of clean energy for Malaysia Airports while working with the limited space available in the airport. The solution was to install ground-mount, parking canopy and roof-top systems on airport land that was not suitable for other revenue-generating activity. Parking canopies combine the benefits of covered parking with the economic benefit of generating electricity at economical and predictable price. Utilizing airport roof-top space and land surrounding the airport, allows electricity to be generated at the point of consumption which further improves efficiency by removing the need for transmission lines.
“Rooftops, parking lots and ‘buffer’ areas at airports are traditionally not multi-purpose facilities, but we’ve turned them into a clean energy generation facility, said Tan Sri Bashir. “This initiative also demonstrates our support towards the Government’s initiative in introducing renewable energy and also to further reduce carbon footprint.”
The installation is designed to generate more than 26,000-megawatt hours of energy per year and avoid18 million kilograms per year of CO2 emissions - equivalent to preventing 6,742 tons of waste from being sent to the landfill every year. The systems use SunEdisonSilvantis™ Solar PV Modules. Silvantis modules are based on SunEdison silicon and wafers and designed for maximum efficiency and durability.
“This project reflects SunEdison’s ability to drive growth through unique development opportunities. In working with Malaysia Airports we were able to help them gain economic benefit from an under-utilized asset they already had—these spaces can now be harnessed to generate clean energy” said Pashupathy Gopalan President - Asia, Middle-East, South Africa, and Australia. “The energy savings, combined with the positive environmental contributions from a solar installation of this size, makes this a great step forward for the airport industry and a huge benefit for the local community.”
The SunEdison Renewable Operation Center (ROC) will provide 24/7 management and monitoring services for of the project to ensure the asset continues to perform as expected in the years to come.
“The completion of this project is very exciting for everyone who was involved,” said Gopalan. There is an excellent feed-in tariff program in Malaysia and we look forward to helping additional airports in Malaysia —and around the world —using solar to save money.”