Kola Peninsula lighthouses to use solar energy

Publish date: August 5, 2003

Solar generators is the only alternative to radioisotope thermal generators (RTG), which use strontium-90 as the energy source for the lighthouses on the Kola Peninsula.

The first experimental solar lighthouses were produced at the Crimea Electrical Engineering Plant Saturn. According to, the units have been delivered to Murmansk. One of them will be installed in Norway, the other at the Kola bay at the Shavor lighthouse in Russia. These two first lighthouses is the first step to implement Russian-Norwegian project on radioisotope thermal generators decommissioning on the Kola Peninsula. Fifty RTGs have been already eliminated during the past 3 years thanks to this project. It takes from 900 to1000 years before the radioisotope generator becomes safe. The new solar panels of the lighthouses will accumulate the energy in the daytime and then use it in the night-time. Norway will finance production of 40 solar powered lighthouses if these two first units show good results. The designers give 20 years operation guarantee. For example, the first experimental solar lighthouse has been working in Azov sea for 17 years.