World's largest solar plant is being built in India
— By Tyler Falk on February 4, 2014, 2:44 PM PST
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I'd be interested in seeing the development plan for this. Especially if it means clearing land for this project. Like these gentlemen said, decentralization will be vital for solar: more resilient and encourages users to be more energy efficient. Decentralization will also be vital for water and food
Exactly. Its all about scale and distance the energy has to travel before reaching its customer. And the local energy need is just as different as the local energy availability (wind perfect some places, solar great for heating almost everywhere but not suficient for generating electricity everywhere (until massive spread of battery storage becomes reality).
And it will produce about 1% of the power of a standard nuclear or coal plant. I believe that for solar power to make a real contribution, it must be decentralized.
Hmmm...certainly an ambitious plan. At least it's in the right location. We spent 2 days trekking and on a camel safari in western Rajasthan out of Jaisalmer and barely saw another soul among the sand dunes and arid desert. Key will be storage and then how to distribute that power out to manufacturing/industrial bases (Gujarat/Haryana?), consumers (Delhi?), and agriculture (Punjab), to name a few? Just the hot air blowing across the country this election year would suffice for now, methinks. But I'm the eternal skeptic, so hope I'm proved wrong. Only time will tell...
PS: No monsoon to speak of here, about 10 days of rain at most.http://waterresources.rajasthan.gov.in/1rainfall.htm
What's impressive in spoiling of almost 100 km2 of valuable land to do the job of a single decent reactor? I am sick and tired of all these little green wonders impressing with nothing more than their inert bulk and unproductive size. Keep it small, stupid!
Why should we NOT use open to sky spaces above roads and rail/metro tracks to set up solar power plants?
This is my question to all governments. I have suggested this to Delhi Metro. Hope they will take up.
This is one of the few comparisons of cost I have seen between nuclear and solar. Unless I am wrong, nuke is far more expensive. Now what we need is storage and the new (well, not so new) membrane batteries may be what will solve that problem. Inefficient, but cheap enough not to matter and enviro friendly.
I do wonder how much power they would get during the monsoon. It may be more than expected.
They won't get much power during the monsoon. I guess they've planned for that. But 4GW is a lot of power to lose from the system.
Today people are using the sun's energy for many different purposes. This is an energy efficient way to power your home and can save you a lot of money in the long run. One vital method to convert solar energy into electricity is through solar power plants.
@tvkrishnam After some discussions that resulted from posts on other articles, I realized that I didn't know a whole lot about these things. I decided to talk to a solar plant operator for some insight. One of the things I learned is that you have to have access. They have a preventative task to routinely check and tighten connections, requiring access to the panels. Yes, it seems like a good idea to use "wasted space" above highways, canals, etc, but the cost of walkways for access in addition to the extra expense of just constructing something in an environment like that, would add a lot to the cost. Just repaving a roadway while it is in operation is a nightmare. I can't imagine building a top over 19,000 acres of roadway.
@dmm99 They'll get used to losing it really quickly. They'll lose it every night.
I am a big solar supporter, but one thing I hate is the faulty comparisons of output between solar installations and just about anything else. This solar plant may put out 4Gw at peak sunlight, but that is only a few hours a day. Everything I have seen is that you get about 4 hours of peak power around noon, A couple of hours on either side of the peak at ~80% and a couple more in the sub 40% range. That's it. Plugging those numbers in and dividing by 24, gives you an equivalent power of about 31% of the peak. So, if you could get that pie-in-the-sky 4 Gw battery to enable this to put out electricity 24/7, it would be like a 1.24 Gw plant. Plus you have to add in the cost of a 4 Gw battery to your 4.4 billion dollar solar plant. If you use real power output and the true cost of competing with nuclear, the price may come out pretty close. (I tried to do a price check on a 4Gw battery, but there was none in stock.)
In any new project there are unknowns. Considering the enormity as well as the benefits it is better to build a small part as trial.
The benefits are saving space for other essential usage. In view of the ever growing population even deserts may need to be converted to agricultural land.