Construction of Singapore floating solar farm commences
Singapore has started work on a vast floating solar farm, the size of 45 football fields.
A partnership between Singapore’s Public Utilities Board (PUB) and Sembcorp Industries will see the beginning of the construction of a 0 megawatt-peak (MWp) floating solar photovoltaic system.
The farm will be based on the Tengeh Reservoir which is based at the eastern half of Singapore and will take over an area which is equivalent to the size of 45 football fields. Unsurprisingly, it’s one of the largest solar farms of its kind in the world.
The solar facility is set to begin generating electricity in 2021, and will power PUB’s water treatment plants.
PUB has stated that the facility will offset around seven per cent of its annual energy requirements. According to the water agency, it equals around 32 kilotonnes of emissions or around seven thousand cars taken off the road.
Following the design and planning stage, an environmental study was conducted which concluded that floating solar panels “have minimal impact on the reservoir’s water quality and biodiversity”, according to PUB.
The design includes the use of cables encased in waterproof insulation in order to assure maximum durability, whilst anchors for the floats will prevent unnecessary movement, such as in strong winds or other extreme weather conditions.
The system has also been designed to enable the possibility of storing energy in battery systems in the future, making the project future proof.
The PV modules use double-glass that are designed to be UV-resistant, preventing them from being degraded from sunlight. The array has been designed to last around two and a half decades.
Advanced performance monitoring will also be included for the project, with the output of the system being fed to engineers and technicians. Live video monitoring will also be utilised in addition to dashboards and alerts which can make engineers and technicians aware of any issues with the system, along with the ability to track environmental factors.
The performance monitoring features also aim to enhance reliability whilst encouraging faster, more timely troubleshooting and maintenance.
Ng Joo Hee, Chief Executive of PUB, said: “With this floating solar power plant, which we believe to be one of the largest in the world, PUB takes a big step towards enduring energy sustainability in water treatment. Solar energy is plentiful, clean and green, and is key to reducing PUB’s and also Singapore’s carbon footprint.”
Skanska invests $225m in Houston office project
Skanska is investing US$225m in an office development project, 1550 on the Green in Houston, with construction expected to begin in June and scheduled to be completed in 2024.
The construction contract is worth US$125M, which will be included in the Q2 order bookings. International law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has signed a 15-year lease for about 30 percent of the building.
Located at 1550 Lamar Street, adjacent to Discovery Green, in downtown Houston, Skanska plans to develop and build a 28-floor, 34,800 square meter office tower.
1550 on the Green will be the first part of a three-block master plan by Skanska, which will transform the parcels into a distinguished district known as Discovery West and consist of 3.5 acres of mixed-use development full of restaurants, retail and lush green space. The project will target LEED and WiredScore Platinum certifications.
Since 2009, Skanska has invested a total of US$2.8 billion in commercial and multi-family projects, creating more than 1 million square meters of sustainable and community focused developments in select U.S. markets. Skanska USA had sales of SEK66 billion in 2020 with 7,600 employees in its operations.
Skanska’s flagship London office has set the standard in sustainable workspaces by becoming the first in the UK to achieve WELL Platinum under the new v2 pilot scheme.
The accreditation from the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) was awarded through the v2 pilot, the newest version of the WELL Building Standard. It looks at all building features and management processes – from air and water quality to lighting, acoustics, nutrition, thermal comfort and mental wellbeing. It’s widely recognised as the industry yardstick for measuring how workspaces can contribute to the wellbeing of occupants.
The offices – which span three floors of the newly developed 51 Moorgate – contain floor-to-ceiling windows for extensive natural light, dedicated wellbeing and quiet spaces, as well as stringent air and water quality monitoring, among a range of other features that have helped earn the standard.
The company has also been exploring drone flights for use in industrial environments.
Peter Cater, Development Manager, said it was invited to carry out trials because of its use and knowledge of drone capability. "The trials have benefited everyone involved: sees.ai get to test their equipment and remote use of the drones and we get access to accurate, real-time data on our construction activities which benefits us and our customer, the Defence Infrastructure Organisation."
“Projects like this – at the forefront of innovation – go to show what an exciting industry construction is to be involved in. We are always looking for innovative ways of working, ways to be more sustainable so we can find better solutions for our customers. These trials are just one small part of our digital transformation journey.”