China begins construction of mega offshore photovoltaic plant

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Inspenet, November 15, 2023.

The official construction of the world’s largest offshore photovoltaic power plant has begun in Dongying, Shandong province, located in eastern China.

The largest marine photovoltaic plant in the world

The State-Owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission of the State Council announced that China Power Construction Corporation has started construction of its 1 GW offshore photovoltaic power plant with fixed pile foundation in Guangli Port. This plant will be the first in the world to reach such a mark.

Completion of this project is projected to generate approximately 1.78 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity annually, equivalent to reducing the consumption of 594,500 metric tons of standard coal. This measure will contribute to reducing carbon dioxide emissions by more than 1.4 million tons.

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There are two variants of marine photovoltaic plants: those with fixed piles and those with a floating surface. The latter are located in deep waters and do not generate negative impacts on the quality of the vital liquid.

Notably, SPIC Guangdong Electric Power is promoting the development of floating surface marine PV power plants, anticipating an eventual shift of offshore PV plants to deeper and more open waters, according to a company employee cited by Yicai.

However, a crucial challenge for offshore PV plants lies in the reliability of PV modules, according to Li Qicong of the China Electronics Standardization Institute. For example, photovoltaic modules must be robust enough to withstand strong winds and waves. Additionally, several industry experts have raised questions about the lifespan of marine PV modules as they must contend with seawater erosion.

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