At Schiphol in Amsterdam, the largest airport in the Netherlands, more solar panels are being installed. A significant portion of the power used at Schiphol East has been generated by 4 MW of solar panels at Hangar 14 since 2021. However, deployment of renewable sources often creates distortion in the power supply and can significantly impact the efficiency and safety of electrical installations and connected equipment. The goal was to ensure solar panels would not interfere with Schiphol’s grid.
Hangar 14 is huge and impressive. When you see three or four Boeings next to each other, it is completely breathtaking. The fact that you’re working behind the customs are, and therefore have to deal with very strict security processes, is an interesting experience. If you’ve forgotten a bolt, you can’t just walk back to the car.
From the engineering phase of these solar panels, we thought along with the customer and anticipated consequences for the grid. In addition, we made recommendations with a view to improving capacity. PQ analyzers were placed on selected transformers to calculate the total consumption in the hangar. The analyzers provided additional information such as Total Harmonic Distortion and RMS. We recommended installing Active Harmonic Filters to eliminate the effects of the solar panels on the rest of the installation, ensuring reliability and significantly reducing the likelihood of failures and problems. The Active Harmonic Filters also contribute to a longer service life. I personally like the fact that KLM is working on improved sustainability and that we can contribute to this.