Axpo kicks off the largest photovoltaic plant in Switzerland

The relevant authorities have given the green light to the energy group Axpo. Which intends to install about 6,000 modules on the Muttsee Dam, nearly 2,500 meters above sea level. The installation will be ready by summer 2021.

Axpo’s photovoltaic plant

The green light in Switzerland

Axpo-promoted renewable energy expansion moves forward. The project to build the 2-megawatt solar power plant on the Muttsee dam has been approved by the canton of Glarus, the Glarus South municipality and the Federal Office of Energy (FOE). For its part, Axpo is now initiating the subsequent procedures to enable the construction and commissioning of the plant, scheduled for summer 2021.

For the company, this installation is in fact intended to be a contribution to the reduction of electricity in winter. Alpine plants have several advantages over those in the plains: first of all, there is less fog at high altitudes and consequently the solar radiation is greater; moreover, the efficiency of the modules is higher at low temperatures; finally, the sunlight is reflected by the snowpack, increasing its effect.

The plant will produce about half of the energy output during the winter’winter. A big step forward: normally, an equivalent plant present in central Switzerland generates only a quarter of its total production volume during the winter’winter.

The plant will produce 2.7 gigawatt hours (GWh) per year, enough to cover the electricity needs of 600 households. Modules will be installed over an area of 10 thousand square meters, directly on the dam wall, Which at 1050 meters is the longest in Switzerland. In contrast, the building, in full southern exposure, is relatively low: it reaches 27 meters.

The words of Simone Demarchi

“The project on the Muttsee Dam is an outstanding example of working ever harder to produce renewable energy.”, Simone Demarchi, ad of Axpo Italy, said. “This infrastructure of which Axpo is a pioneer will be a viable alternative to traditional supply channels especially for green energy even in winter periods, which traditionally are when consumption increases sharply”.

New studies and new projects

In recent months, Axpo has commissioned a lot of research on wind and snow loads in the area. A study by the Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research (SLF) found that snow loads can be decidedly high in some parts of the system.

Permission from cantonal authorities is but a first step. Next is the’inclusion in the SFOE list of so-called pilot projects: that is, those that get financial aid from the federal government.