Campus and Community

Técnico’s first photovoltaic power plant is already operating

The structure was installed on the rooftop of the Civil Engineering building in early 2023 and started to operate on March 7. The project will extend to the entire Alameda Campus.

Técnico’s first renewable energy power plant, a photovoltaic power plant installed on the rooftop of the Civil Engineering building, at Alameda Campus, started to operate on March 7. It is made up of 361 panels 450Wp (watt-peak), consisting of two Production Units for Self-consumption (UPAC), totalling 162kWp (kilowatt-peak). It is expected to produce up to 0.3 GWh (gigawatt) of energy annually.

The project is part of Técnico’s Energy Efficiency Plan and includes several investments in building rehabilitation at Alameda campus. “It will allow considerable energy savings while simultaneously improving indoor thermal comfort”, points out Mário de Matos, from the Facilities and Equipment Area at Instituto Superior Técnico.

The project, which is currently underway, will extend to the entire Alameda campus. Several photovoltaic panels are expected to be installed “on the remaining building rooftops available for that purpose”. By June 2023, the number of panels on campus will be 2250 totalling 650kWp, capable of producing 1100MWh (megawatt-hours) per year, which represents 9 per cent of the annual electricity consumption at Alameda campus. “At the current price of electricity, it corresponds to a reduction of 275 thousand euros per year in energy bills”, explains Mário de Matos. “There will be no excess production regarding the energy consumption needs of buildings, even during the months of greatest production, due to the high electrical energy demand of almost all campus buildings” he adds.

The project also includes the rehabilitation of building rooftops at Alameda campus in a total investment of more than one million Euros. The Técnico’s Energy Efficiency Plan is supported by the Operational Programme for Sustainability and Efficient Use of Resources (POSEUR) and represents a total investment of five million euros.