Irshad Salim — Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority (ADWEA) has awarded India-based engineering firm Sterling and Wilson with both the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) and operation and maintenance contract for the world’s largest single location solar photovoltaic (PV) plant at Sweihan in Abu Dhabi, UAE.
The 1177MW plant is being jointly developed by Marubeni, a Japanese integrated trading and investment giant, along with China’s Jinko Solar, a global leader in the solar industry, and ADWEA.
With construction already under way, the plant, which is spread over a desert area of 7,800 ha, is scheduled to be fully integrated with the grid in a record timeline of just 23 months.
To top it all, the project was awarded for 350MW at the lowest ever recorded bid in the history of PV solar, according to reports confirmed by a post on the website of the Mumbai-based Sterling and Wilson.
At 2.42 US dollarcent per kilowatt hour, it was the lowest purchase price for solar power based on public-private partnership (PPP) in the region and the world — first reported in September 2016. At the same time there were also media reports that the low bid was at 2.3 US dollarcent per kilowatt hour.
The Asian consortium led by Jinko and Marubeni submitted an offer to expand the plant to 1,170MW at an offer of 2.30 cents, reported The National citing sources who did not want to be named.
Once commissioned, the plant’s operation would save around seven million tons of carbon emissions every year, a number that would be a national landmark, SW stated.
“We are fully geared and very excited to be a part of this important milestone in the global solar market,” said Bikesh Ogra, the president for renewable energy at Sterling and Wilson, a subsidiary of the industrial conglomerate Shapoorji Pallonji Group, said.
Sterling and Wilson also has to its credit 1400 MW of best-performing solar power plants in various geographies and employs more than 3,000 engineers, project managers and designers.
The company has completed projects in the Philippines and South Africa, and a number of projects in Zambia, Niger and Morocco are currently under construction, Ogra added.