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Effectiveness of the Hybrid System Combining Hydropower and Floating Solar in the Lao PDR

Effectiveness of the Hybrid System Combining Hydropower and Floating Solar in the Lao PDR
15 February 2024
Shigeru Kimura, Kei Sudo, Alexander Ryota Keeley, Kento Komatsubara
Energy, Hybrid System, Solar, Hydropower, Lao PDR

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The Lao People's Democratic Republic (Lao PDR) boasts abundant hydropower resources. However, during the dry season, the nation grapples with an electricity shortage from hydropower plants due to diminished water flow. Consequently, there is a reliance on importing electricity from Thailand. A plausible solution to this challenge involves the installation of a solar photovoltaic (PV) system, particularly effective during the dry season. However, solar PV exhibits intermittency, a low capacity factor, relatively high generation costs, and seasonality. Therefore, it is imperative to assess the viability of solar PV installation using a power generation simulation approach based on hourly solar irradiation data. This study endeavours to evaluate and assess the effectiveness of solar PV as a potential complementary power source to hydropower plants. The assessment assumes a hybrid system that combines hydropower with a floating solar PV system placed on the surface of the hydropower dam.

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