Singapore water agency PUB is embarking on a nine-month feasibility study to determine the solar deployment potential at its reservoirs and facilities. Findings from the study will determine the usable space and guide PUB’s future efforts in solar deployment.

Solar PV technology has been identified as a key renewable energy source that has high potential for large-scale deployment in Singapore. The reservoirs, with their open surface area, offer much potential for solar energy generation. Besides ten reservoirs, the study will also look into the solar deployment potential at land-based facilities such as waterworks and water reclamation plant.

“With Singapore reaching a critical mass for solar installations coupled with the declining cost of solar technology, PUB wants to ride on this wave and explore how some of our reservoirs can support floating solar systems," said Tan Nguan Sen, Chief Sustainability Officer at PUB. "Through this study, PUB is keen to explore how we can balance the installation of solar panels on the water surface with other competing water activities at our reservoirs."

The $338,000 study is to be conducted by a consortium led by WEnergy Global Pte Ltd, with SMS Consulting Engineers Pte Ltd and Progressive Engineering & Management as consortium members.

PUB, along with the Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore, are also test-bedding a floating solar system at Tengeh Reservoir, which includes an environmental study to measure the impact of such systems on reservoir evaporation, biodiversity and water quality. The panels are expected to be installed by 2016.