JOHOR BAHRU, 18 July 2016 – The Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) Solar Farm 10 Mega Watt project will be a pilot project and the first living solar farm laboratory of its kind on the university campus in Malaysia.
The Project’s main objectives are not only to encourage the utilisation of effective, sustainable and renewable energy technology for commercial, educational and also research purposes but also part of innovative way of the UTM’s income generation.
The project is under Large Scale Solar (LSS) programme of the Energy Commission (EC) Malaysia where they have allocated about 42 Mega Watt, whereby the first phase of UTM’s solar project in qualified for 10 MW which will cost up to RM57 million is fully funded by the investors. The solar power harvested can power approximately 1,500 homes.
This project is expected to bring as much benefit to the university where the project has allocated a research fund amounting to RM600,000.00 which will be utilised for the establishment and advanced laboratory related to the solar technology to be named as “UTM Real-time and High-End Photovoltaic Monitoring System Laboratory”.
Three UTM Professors and experts will be involved in the UTM Solar Farm development in terms of the innovation collaboration aspects to further develop skills and expertise in the solar system technology.
This project will not only provide conducive and innovative shaded parking area for the campus residents but also will generate approximately RM3 million income to the university via the parking lot rental of almost 50 acres wide for the period of 21 years.
UTM will also receive additional income of almost half a million ringgit every year after the 10th year for total of 11 years of the project.
The project kick-off will be in early 2017 where AES will provide high performance solar energy systems and bespoke mounting structures for 10 Mega Watt (MW) solar car parks in UTM.
The high quality, energy efficient installation are designed by AES’s in-house team, Optimal Power Solution Pte. Ltd from the parent company from Australia with over 35 years experiences expertise in solar engineering.
This 10 Mega Watt of power harvested from the sun can power 1,500 homes beside its dual use of land as both parking lot and solar farm. The project includes some very innovative aspects including car park shading, which will benefit the whole university campus residents such as the staff and the students.
As such, the collaborative natural and energy saving project harvesting solar energy is hoped to enhance the skills and technology expertise of the university, along with the objective of UTM’s income generation.
Thus, this MoA can act as a catalyst for enhanced and sustained R&D based on first-class research activities resulting in excellent and impactful outputs. It would not only contribute towards the growth and development of the solar technology, but would also nurture home-grown experts and researchers.
The UTM Solar Farm project which is initiated by the UTM Office of Asset and Development is also supported by UTM Innovation & Commercialization Centre (ICC) as the main unit in UTM which manages the innovation and commercialization of UTM research output.
Signing on behalf of UTM was the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Ir. Datuk Dr. Wahid Omar while the Applied Energy Solutions Sdn. Bhd was represented by its Chairman, Mr. Stephen James Philips.
Also attending the ceremony were Deputy Vice Chancellor (Development), Prof. Dr. Azlan Abdul Rahman and Director of UTM Office of Asset and Development, Prof. Dr. Abd. Latif Saleh.