Canadian Solar supplies modules for Turkey's largest commercial PV project

The 540 kW solar power plant at Izmir Airport, installed by Gehrlicher Merk Solar, is the first PV project under the new Turkish 500 kW law

According to reports, the solar park has a capacity of 540 kW (450 kW on-grid and 90 kW off-grid), making it the largest solar power plant in the country. This is the second project that Canadian Solar has worked on in collaboration with the EPC contractor Gehrlicher Merk Solar in Turkey (a joint venture between German Gehrlicher Solar AG and Turkish Akfel Group) following a 96 kW governmental PV project, which was finalised in September 2012.

The project, comprised of a ground-mounted installation of 450 kW and 90 kW of off-grid systems on several radar stations at Izmir airport, is reportedly the first project developed under to be erected under newly-introduced Turkish legislation (YEK) to foster renewable energy plants under 500 kW. The regulation has encouraged a pipeline of projects totaling 40-50 MW so far, and emphasises the interest of the government in the development of a renewable energy industry in Turkey. One core advantage of the new legislation is the simplified official procedures, sources believe.

"The new YEK will have a great impact on business development in this industry and we are delighted to be a part of that,” added Dr. Shawn Qu, Chairman and CEO of Canadian Solar. “With this project as a reference, we believe we will continue this success in other national and international airport projects in the future.”

The solar park at Izmir airport is the second joint project of Canadian Solar and Gehrlicher Merk Solar in Turkey. With their first finalized solar power plant – a governmental rooftop installation of 96 kW for the municipality of Bursa – the solar company and the EPC contractor were nominated as the only solar project for the Best Renewable Energy Collaboration Award at this year's TIREC Awards in Turkey. Up until the completion of the 540 kW project in Izmir, the 96 kW photovoltaic system in Bursa had been the largest Turkish Governmental supported solar power plant.

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Photovoltaics (PV)  •  Policy, investment and markets