Cochin International Airport Limited in Kochi, Kerala (India) has become the first airport in the world to be powered entirely by solar power. A 12 MW solar PV plant, spread over 50 acres, was inaugurated two days back near the airport’s cargo complex.
The power plant took 6 months to complete and has come up at a cost of ₹620 million ($9.5 million).
Technically speaking, the airport is now grid neutral, as it will give back more than it consumes from the grid. The newly installed solar power plant can generate between 50,000 to 60,000 kWh per day.
The airport has another 1 MW solar PV plant in addition to a smaller grid-connected 100 kW rooftop system, both of which were installed in 2013.
The electricity generated from the system will be fed into the power grid and the airport will use equivalent power from the utility. The plant is expected to produce much more than what the airport would consume, and for this purpose a PPA has been signed with Kerala State Electricity Board to sell any surplus power.
The 12 MW system was executed by Bosch’s Energy and Building Solutions team in India. This is the largest project for the company to date.