Oman’s largest solar power plant is likely to be up and running by the middle of next year, according to a report.
Located in Al-Dhahirah Governorate, Ibri 2 PV IPP contains approximately 1.4 million solar panels and extends over an area of 13 million sqCuare meters. The 500 MW project is deemed to be Oman’s largest utility-scale solar PV Independent Power Project. At peak generation capacity, the plant output will be enough to supply an estimated 33,000 homes with electricity and will offset 340,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions a year.The solar power plant costs about $400 million.
Named Oman Ibri II power plant, the project is being developed by ACWA Power, Gulf Investment Corporation (GIC) and Alternative Energy Projects Company with a funding ratio of 70:30.
“The arrival of the first shipment of the bifacial solar panels to the project site on schedule is truly a major achievement because of the enormous challenges faced due to COVID -19 related supply chain disruptions in China – the manufacturing base of our solar panel partners,” said Rajit Nanda, chief investment officer of ACWA Power and board member of Shams Al-Dhahirah Generating Company.
The electricity generated from the project will be stored in inverters supplied by Sungrow. These inverters can operate in temperatures of up to 50 degrees Celsius without any reduction in performance.
“Sungrow has been in Oman for over three years and retains a 100 per cent market share in the Omani solar market. Besides the signed 500MW project in Oman you may notice Sungrow products and solutions have been installed widely in the MENA region. This January, Sungrow signed two distribution agreements totalling 200MW to supply commercial, industrial and residential inverter solutions in this region. Other featured projects include an 18MW commercial rooftop plant in the UAE and a 105MW solar plant in Oman which is about to be online soon.”, Alvin Shi, the company’s managing director for the MENA region, said.
He added that “The Ibri project is the largest photovoltaic plant in the country to date. It is located in a desert 300 km to the west of Muscat, with ample sunshine and abundant flat land. It is favourable to set up solar plants in this vibrant market, as is in other key markets in the MENA regions due to the regional initiatives on renewable energy and ample abundant sunlight.”
The project is part of the Sultanate’s efforts to diversify its sources of energy, which is part of the country’s Tanfeedh plans for economic expansion.
“The Ibri II solar plant is expected to play a strategic role in building Oman’s renewable production capacity,” said Rajit Nanda, chief investment officer for ACWA Power.