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Over summer 2020, Hydro-Québec will build its first two photovoltaic solar generating stations. The stations will be connected to the grid and will have a total installed capacity of 9.5 MW.
The locations chosen for the construction of the planned generating stations are on land owned by Hydro-Québec in Varennes (Hydro-Québec’s research institute) and La Prairie (former site of the La Citière thermal generating station).
In addition to generating electricity from solar radiation, a source of renewable energy, this project will aim to achieve a number of objectives, including:
Photovoltaic solar generating stations convert energy from solar radiation into electrical energy. Their main components are shown in the diagram to the left.
Hydro-Québec will begin building solar generating stations in La Prairie and Varennes in spring 2020. Commissioning is scheduled for fall 2020. This project will allow us to conduct the necessary tests to determine whether solar energy is well adapted to the Québec climate, to our generating fleet and to our transmission system.
There will be close to 26,000 bifacial panels on the site of the future generating station. Bifacial technology makes it possible to capture direct solar radiation on the panels’ top surface and indirect reflected radiation from the ground on the rear surface.
The installation of the panels has been completed and the trial phase is under way.
This fall, the French-language Québec magazine for youth about science, technology, society and the environment, Curium, published an article on our photovoltaic solar plants [PDF 230 kB].
The solar generating stations were inaugurated on June 21, 2021, in the presence of Hydro-Québec’s President and CEO, Sophie Brochu, along with the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, Jonatan Julien. Ms. Brochu took advantage of the occasion to reveal the names of the generating stations: Gabrielle-Bodis generating station, located in La Prairie, and Robert-A.-Boyd generating station, located in Varennes. The mayors of La Prairie and Varennes, as well as relatives of the commemorated individuals were also in attendance.