Conversion to green energy to save airport 20 crore
CHENNAI: The airport is set to become an energy conscious facility and saving nearly 20 crore in the process by switching to LED lights and installing more solar panels. The change expected to be complete by March next year, follows the Union ministry’s green airports initiative. Airside lighting – runway lights, taxiway lights and apron lights – were converted to LED, which has led to a savings of 4.92 crore per year. The work was completed in May. Now, conventional lights inside the passenger and cargo terminals, administrative block, and the sodium vapour and fluorescent lights on the city-side of the airport campus will be changed into LED lights. This will help the airport save another 5crore. A senior official of Airports Authority of India (AAI) said, “The work has already begun. The plan is to complete majority of the work by March, the rest will be completed by June. There is a plan to install solar panels in the operational area. This will add to further saving for the airport.”
Chennai airport is the first airport to convert runway lights into LED. The peak hour demand of power at the airport is 15MW and 50lakh units are consumed per month. The airport has roof-top solar panels which generate 1.5MW. The plan is to add solar panels in the space between the runways to generate another 6MW. The electricity from the solar panels will help the airport save 10crore per year. “We have applied for permission to install solar panels inside the operational area. Once the permission is received, tender will be floated to identify a contractor for the work.”
The LED lights and the solar panels when installed fully will help save nearly 20 crore per year as per an audit that was done recently. The steel and glass design of the terminal already saves power during the day. LED lighting is a major green initiative by AAI for all its airports as it not only saves energy and money but also eliminates pollution caused by sodium and mercury vapour lamps, and fluorescent lights. AAI’s corporate plan says that ICT-based building management system, automated electrical power demand assessment, climate control and frequent energy audits to assess areas where there are energy leaks and how energy can be conserved will be carried out as part of long term plans.