A gigantic solar farm will soon see the light of day in South Australia. It will be the largest of its kind in the world with over 3.4 million solar panels and over 1 million batteries installed by the end of 2017.
Welcome to South Australia, near Adelaide. It is an arid and isolated place which in a few months will house the largest solar park in the world. Lyon Group, the builder in charge of the project, ensures that work should begin at the beginning of the summer for partial commissioning as of September 2017. In total, more than 3.4 million solar panels and 1.1 million individual batteries will be installed. Eventually, they will be able to generate 330 megawatts of energy and store at least 100 megawatts.
Other facilities will exceed it in area around the world, but this one is expected to surpass all other solar farms in generation and storage capacity. The particularity of this project is the presence on the same site of solar panels and batteries. » We find that large-scale parks where solar panels and batteries coexist are an essential solution in any decarbonization process. Projects like this, renewable energy projects, are the future “, declared a few days ago Jay Weatheril, the Prime Minister of South Australia.
The project will be done in stages. Initially, 20 megawatts of panels and 2 megawatts of lithium batteries will be commissioned in September 2017. In a second phase, 100 megawatts of panels and 20 megawatts of batteries will be added to be operational before the end of 2017. Ultimately, the park should cover an area of 4,000 square meters. The total cost of the project is estimated at around $1 billion.
The use of renewable energy in South Australia is a hotly debated issue at the local level at the moment. Since September, the Australian state of South Australia has suffered a series of power outages that have sparked a fierce political debate over the state’s reliance on renewable energy. Cuts are recurrent there, but the problem has worsened to the point of speaking of an “energy crisis”. Admittedly, Australia is to date the largest consumer of renewable energy, but these energies do not deliver electricity all year round since it cannot be stored. This new farm should therefore be able to “solve” part of the problem.
A few days ago, Elon Musk also wanted to ease tensions by proposing to solve the energy problem by equipping the region with a battery farm whose total power reaches 100 MW (the minimum necessary for South Australia no more power cuts), all in just one hundred days. If this deadline was not met, Elon Musk said he would do it for free.