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Maracana Stadium Solar-Powered (Rio, Brazil)

Credits: ©2017 Solaripedia

During the 2016 Olympic Games in sunny Brazil, the official ceremonies and soccer matches were held in the solar-powered Maracana sports stadium in Rio. Encircling the arena are 1,556 Chinese Yingli solar panels that power a 390kW system – enough to power 240 homes annually. The system has been providing unlimited clean energy to the stadium - while reducing 2,560 tons of carbon dioxide emissions each year - since the 2014 World Cup. Solar energy is popular in Brazil, encouraged by a government program called PROESCO that provides financial support for end-users looking to install solar energy systems. As a result, producing power from rooftop solar panels in Brazil costs less than electricity sold by 10 of the country’s 63 power distributors, according to the national energy agency Empresa de Pesquisa Energetica.


Maracana Stadium Solar in Rio 5

Maracana Stadium in Rio, site of the 2016 Summer Olympics and the 2014 World Cup, is ringed by more than 1,552 rooftop solar panels for a 390 kW solar power system. ©2016 Yingli Solar

Maracana stadium was built in 1950 for that year’s World Cup, and has been renovated to enlarge its seating capacity to 87,000. Built using reinforced concrete, it has an oval shape and consists of two main tiers. A cantilevered roof spanning 30 meters covers 34 rows at the rear of the stadium.

Yingli’s partners overcame architectural challenges posed by the stadium’s retractable canvas roof by mounting the solar panels on a perimeter 183-ton metal ring encircling the top of the stadium. YGE 245 Series polycrystalline 245-watt modules were used for the project.

The Maracanã stadium is one of the largest stadiums in South America, and has been one of the legendary places of soccer/football. In a 2011 survey, before the World Cup, 90% of Brazilians said it was vital that the 2014 FIFA World Cup be environmentally friendly.

The solar panels provide a strong visual reminder of the importance of the environment to the people of Brazil.

As of March 2017, the stadium is closed, shuttered due to lack of use and non-payment of bills.


  Rio Maracana Stadium Solar Panels Case Study (1,635 kb)


Maracana Stadium Solar Powered Video