Belgian company EnergyVision will install 66,200 solar panels on the grounds of Ostend-Bruges Airport. The deployment, which is schedule to take place this fall, will make the airport the second largest solar panel park in Belgium. The panels have a total capacity of over 40MWp. The airport is producing its own energy consumption, that of Antwerp Airport and that of almost 10,000 Ostend families 100% green.
EnergyVision, which is responsible for installation, maintenance and financing, is investing 35 million euros in the installation of the solar panel park. The solar panels at the airport will account for an annual production of nearly 37,000 MWh. The production of solar energy will also save 9,600 tons of CO2 on an annual basis.
The energy generated will initially be used to supply electricity to the entire airport site. This project will allow the airport to operate on 100% green electricity. However, with an annual electricity production of nearly 37,000 MWh, the airport will generate much more electricity than it can consume itself. “In addition to greening our own power consumption, the remaining energy we get from the solar panels will be able to be used by almost 10,000 families in the area. For us it is important that our neighbors can also benefit from this,” said Eric Dumas CEO of Ostend-Bruges Airport.
In a next phase, energy storage capabilities will also be added. EnergyVision and Ostend-Bruges Airport are also already looking into the further future. Here, the installation of kinetic tiles is being investigated whereby travelers can generate their own electricity as they step. This way, they literally go onto the plane full of energy.
The remaining energy will be used by almost 10,000 families in the area.Eric Dumas, CEO of Ostend-Bruges Airport
The solar panels will be placed in three different locations at the airport. The two largest zones are located on the airport’s grassy areas along Dunkirk Road and across the runway. The third zone is located on aircraft parking Apron 2. The area where passengers walk from the gates to the aircraft will be completely covered and clad with solar panels. This allows passengers to walk to the aircraft in comfort even when it is raining and also generates energy. The total area of the solar park is about 303,864 m2. That corresponds to 61 soccer fields full of solar panels. Ostend-Bruges Airport thus becomes the second largest solar park in Belgium.
Ostend-Bruges Airport intends to further pursue its sustainable ambitions and further develop into a modern mobility center. “Every new, green and innovative decision we take also has a positive impact on economic growth in the region. With this, the airport aims to create added value not only for travelers by focusing on smooth and fast service, but also for its environment,” said Dumas.
The introduction of solar energy at the airport is an important step to further reduce the airport’s carbon footprint. We are actively participating in the Airport Carbon Accreditation program, which aims to make airports worldwide carbon neutral by 2050.