The following section of the report features three companies that have embarked on their solar adoption journey. Their cases serve to highlight some of their learnings which may be useful for companies thinking about, or starting on, their own solar adoption journey.

Solarisation at the design and planning stage

The carpark at Bombardier Inc.’s service centre in Seletar Aerospace Park used to be an open-air surface carpark where visitors and employees’ vehicles were subjected to the blazing sun and weather elements. An innovative solution was found with solar PV installation. The solar PV panels serve a dual purpose – they generate electricity from solar energy for the facility and they also provide shading for parked vehicles at the same time. The installation in the carpark is part of the 1MWp solar PV deployment across the facility. The solarisation process started in 2017 with the drafting of specifications and researching the available technology and solar suppliers in the market. Despite the site complexities and COVID-19 pandemic which resulted in delays, designing and planning for solar PV installation in parallel to the service centre expansion has allowed the company to operate without significant disruption to the business. Mr Simon Wayne, General Manager for APAC, oversaw the deployment from Day 1: “As a design engineer by training, design and plan together for solar PV installation when you are building a new facility or undergoing major works. It would avoid duplicative and abortive work down the road, and effectively save costs.”

Doing your homework

Before Proponent S.E.A. Pte Ltd moved to its current location in Seletar Aerospace Park, Director for APAC operations, Mr Steven Leong, has started to consider solar installation for the new building. He and his team read up extensively on solar technology and equipment, including understanding the different manufacturers for the solar PV system parts and the type of maintenance required. They also spoke to numerous solar suppliers to find out about the different financing arrangements offered for installation. “A thorough understanding of our business operations, including accurate energy data, has helped to sharpen our cost-benefit analysis, and ultimately narrowed down to the best-fit solar deployment model for Proponent’s facility.” Mr Steven Leong noted that the solar leasing arrangement meets his company’s requirements, and the generated solar power is able to partially supplant the facility’s grid power needs.

Solarisation model for every size

Fidel Engineering and Trading Pte Ltd is a home-grown small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) that is an aerospace engineering integrator. The facility in Loyang Industrial Estate has installed a 0.1MWp solar PV system on its rooftop in 2022. Due to the available site size for installation, the solar suppliers approached by Mr Poon How Wan, Managing Director, did not offer their solar leasing service. Undaunted, he looked for other solar suppliers which provide supply-and-install service. “My roof space is too small for those solar vendors to be interested. I thought perhaps I should consider installing the solar PV panels myself.” There were upfront costs which was forked out by Fidel Engineering as it was a solar PV purchase with installation. In Fidel Engineering’s case, the payback period has worked out to be an attractive 3-4 years to recoup back the upfront investment in the system. In the midst of rising electricity tariff rate, the solar electricity has immediately helped to alleviate some of the company’s monthly utilities expense when the solar PV system came online.


Cover image by AAIS