Innovative Island Technology
Singapore has made progress in several pockets that many small-island countries can learn from. Singapore has deployed and scaled up some of the technologies that will prove crucial for any island country’s survival in the 21st century.
District cooling: Five floors below the luxury shops at Marina Bay Sands, SP Group runs a giant cooler. It provides cooling to dozens of skyscrapers and developments in the vicinity, saving a huge amount of premium space in each building that would otherwise be taken by air conditioning equipment. Crucially, the bigger a cooling network, the more energy efficient it can be.
The plant can also act like a huge ice battery. During off-peak hours, such as at night, the plant has vast stores of water that can be cooled to near freezing temperatures. Then in the day, it can tamp down electricity consumption by using the freezing waters to supply the cooling network.
Offshore Solar: As solar panels have become cheaper, they are finding use in all sorts of places. One promising application is to put them on top of bodies of water, which brings multiple advantages. Covering a reservoir reduces evaporation, while sitting atop water keeps panels cool and increases how much energy they can produce.
Singapore is also building floating solar on lakes and even its coast line. Built during the pandemic, the 5-megawatt peak solar plant makes use of plastic pontoons filled with air to hold the solar panels in place. However, the system is flexible enough that waves up to 2 meters simply pass through.
Topic: Innovative Solutions
Photo or video credit: Wei Leng Tay (district cooling) and Bryan van der Beek (solar panels) /Bloomberg
Text Credit: Sheryl Lee Akshat Rathi
Date : 2 August 2023