- India and China are the leading countries with the largest photovoltaic power plants in the world.
- UAE, along with Egypt, is also investing in large-scale green energy generation using photovoltaic power plants.
- The largest solar power generator is in India, named Bhadla Solar Park, with a capacity of 2255 MW.
Solar power generator plants are no longer a novelty in the vast energy market. Recently, many countries have begun actively switching to solar energy – a clean, inexhaustible, and now relatively inexpensive alternative energy source.
To date, the leadership in the generation of solar energy in the world has been taken over by India, China, and other Middle Eastern nations.
At the end of 2020, India owned the world’s largest solar power capacity, with Bhadla Solar Park having a capacity of 2255 MW.
Solar energy is thriving, especially in the desert regions of Asia and the Middle East, where substantial solar power plants are rapidly expanding and rebuilding. So here take a look at the top world’s largest solar power generators:
Table of Contents
- 1. Bhadla Solar Park | 2255 MW | India
- 2. Huanghe Hydropower Hainan Solar Park | 2200 MW | China
- 3. Pavagada Solar Park | 2050 MW | India
- 4. Benban Solar Park | 1,650 MW | Egypt
- 5. Tengger Desert Solar Park | 1,500MW | China
- 6. Noor Abu Dhabi | 1,177 MW | the United Arab Emirates
- 7. Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park | 1000 MW | UAE
- 8. Kurnool Ultra Mega Solar Park | 1000 MW | India
- 9. Datong Solar Park | 1,000 MW | China
- 10. NP Kunta Ultra Mega Solar Park | 900 MW | India
1. Bhadla Solar Park | 2255 MW | India
Hero Future Energies, one of India’s leading private renewable energy companies, completed a 300-megawatt solar power project at the Bhadla Solar Power Park in Rajasthan in late March 2020.
With this project, the solar park is now complete with an installed capacity of 2,255 megawatts. The Bhadla Solar Park is significant in many ways. The solar park posted several record prices during some highly competitive auctions.
Multiple companies developed the projects in the solar park through a joint venture of public-private partnership.
The state government built 745 megawatts of capacity, a joint venture between IL and FS, and the government of Rajasthan constructed 1 gigawatt of capacity.
Another joint venture between Adani Enterprises and the government of Rajasthan developed 500 megawatts for this project.
The list of projects that make up the park, the developers, and the capacity of each are collected in the list published by Mercom Capital.
2. Huanghe Hydropower Hainan Solar Park | 2200 MW | China
Qinghai Hainan-Henan Zhumadian was a highly anticipated project launched in China. The Yellow River Company constructed 81% of the project’s first phase.
It also constructed 4050 MW that supports photovoltaic and wind power supply points. The project is the world’s largest new energy power generation project completed in the shortest time.
It is also the largest solar park in Qinghai Province, constructed by the State Power Investment Corporation this year.
The grid-connected 2200 MW project is located in San Tala, Gonghe County, Qinghai Province, with an average altitude of more than 3000 meters.
It includes five bidding sections, a total of 672 sub-arrays, and the construction of three 330kV booster stations.
3. Pavagada Solar Park | 2050 MW | India
Pavagada Solar Park extends on a total area of 53 km2 occupying the area of Pavagada Taluk of Tumkur district, located in Karnataka.
The park was completed in 2019; the park has a capacity of 2,050 MW and is the second-largest photovoltaic plant in the world. The total investment required to build the budgeted 2 GW capacity was estimated at $ 2.1 billion.
Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Ltd (KREDL) and the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) formed a joint venture to complete the project.
In March 2015, Karnataka Solar Power Development Corporation Ltd (KSPDCL) launched the solar power project in Karnataka, India.
The chairman of the State High-Level Committee (SLHCC) nods the agreement on KSL’s proposal to build a solar power park in Pavagada Taluk on October 29, 2015.
The villages of Balasamudra, Tirumani, Kyataganacharlu, Vallur, and Rayacharlu were included in the project.
KSPDCL used the plug-and-play model to implement the project. At the beginning of the project, the company obtained acres of land, received all the permissions needed from the government for solar power generation, and then awarded contracts to solar power developers (SPDs) through auctions.
After much deliberation, NTPC Limited, in April 2016, gave the contracts to six companies for developing a total of 500 MW of power in the Pavagada Solar Park.
Parampujya Solar Energy, Fortum Finnsurya Energy, ACME Solar Holdings, and Tata Power Renewable Energy received 100 MW each. Yarrow Infrastructure and Renew Power obtained commissioning 50 MW each.
Yarrow Infrastructure bid Rs 4.78 / kWh, Renew Power 4.80, and the other four companies bid 4.79 / kWh.
4. Benban Solar Park | 1,650 MW | Egypt
Benban Solar Park is built with a total capacity of 1,650 MWp. It is located in the Benban area of the Aswan Dam, Cairo, Egypt. It produces approximately 3.8 TWh yearly. As of 2021, Benban is currently the fourth-largest solar power plant in the world.
The Benban solar park is expanded over 37.2 km2 and subdivided into 41 separate plots. The plots are arranged in 4 rows for convenience.
The four new substations connect the forty-one plants of the Benban solar park to the high-voltage grid. Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company (EETC) built these new substations.
These substations are again connected to the already developed 220 kV line, which runs in the periphery area of the park. EETC has also announced building an additional connection to the neighboring 500 kV line.
The measurements recorded in the environmental and social assessment report imply that the solar site resource is approximately 2,300 kWh/m2 per year.
In the case of maximum insolation of 1000 W/m2, the average capacity will be 26% of the capacity specified. Therefore, the potential annual energy production will slightly increase by 4 TWh / year.
Benban Solar Park is launched as part of Egypt’s Nubian Suns Power Fee Program. It is a significant initiative launched to influence the private sector to invest capital and expertise to generate 20% electricity from renewable resources by 2022.
5. Tengger Desert Solar Park | 1,500MW | China
The Tengger Desert solar plant has a capacity of 1,547 MW and was installed in the Tengger desert in Zhongwei, Ningxia province.
Construction began in 2012 and was completed at the end of 2015, although it was not connected to the grid until a year later. It is known in China as the Great Solar Wall.
The Tengger Desert is an arid natural region that spreads approximately over 36,700 km and is mainly located in the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region in China. The solar plant covers an area of 1,200 km2, equivalent to 3.2% of the desert surface. National Grid Zhongwei Power Supply Co operates the Tengger Desert plant.
6. Noor Abu Dhabi | 1,177 MW | the United Arab Emirates
The Government of Abu Dhabi of United Arab Emirates and the consortium formed by the Japanese Marubeni and the Chinese Jinko Solar developed and commissioned the Noor Abu Dhabi photovoltaic plant. It has 3.2 million solar panels with a total capacity of 1,177 MW.
Noor Abu Dhabi can boast of being the cheapest operating plant in the world. In total, the investment in the plant has been 870 million dollars.
Likewise, it is expected that with this plant, Abu Dhabi will stop emitting one million tons of CO2, equivalent to the emissions of some 200,000 internal combustion cars circulating on the roads for a year.
The implementation of this solar project marks a significant milestone in UAE’s Energy Strategy. It was launched in 2017 to increase the contribution of clean energy to the total energy mix to 50% by 2050 while reducing the carbon footprint of power generation by 70%.
7. Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park | 1000 MW | UAE
Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Plant is located in Seih Al Dahal, about 50 km south of Dubai.
The park is currently the region’s largest solar photovoltaic (PV) installation. It is extended over 59 acres or 238,764 square meters, equivalent to 33 soccer fields.
The 13MW PV solar plant is the first announced phase of the iconic Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum solar park, named after His Highness, Vice President and acting Prime Minister of UAE, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and Ruler of Dubai.
The park covers 40 square kilometers and produces 1,000 MW of clean energy for the national electricity grid, using PV technology and solar thermal technology.
Construction of the project began with site preparation on March 15, 2013, and was completed, according to schedule, in less than 30 weeks.
The solar park was commissioned by the Dubai Supreme Energy Council and is managed and operated by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), the state energy company.
8. Kurnool Ultra Mega Solar Park | 1000 MW | India
On April 28, the Indian media reported that 900 MW of the Indian photovoltaic park Kurnool Ultra Mega Solar Park had already been connected to the grid.
This solar park, located in Panyam Mandal, Kurnool district, Andhra Pradesh, has a 1,000 MW capacity and exceeds China’s 850 MW Longyangxia Solar Park. The park covers an area of 2,400 hectares.
The project of constructing the park was completed with the joint efforts of Andhra Pradesh Solar Power Corporation Private Limited (PSPCL), Solar Energy Corporation of India, Andhra Pradesh Power Generation Corporation, and New and Andhra PradLtd’std’s Renewable Energy Development Corporation.
Park’s construction needed an investment of about 1,100 million dollars, financed by the developers and the central and state governments.
The developers invested about $ 930 million, with the remainder being funded by APSPCL and a grant from the Union Government.
The park utilizes more than 4 million solar panels, each with a capacity of 315 watts. The panels are joined to four 220/33 kV stations of 250 MW each and a 400/220 kV electrical substation of almost 2,000 kilometers of cable circuits.
The Kurnool solar park produces about 8 GWh per day. This much power is enough to satisfy 80% of the electricity demand of the Kurnool district.
NTPC Limited invited the solar developers to submit their bids for the park’s first phase on April 29, 2015, and the second phase on May 21, 2015. The contracts were awarded to the solar power developers in mid-December 2015.
500 MW were granted to SunEdison (Greenko acquired its part after the bankruptcy of the United States) and 350 MW to Softbank Energy, 100 MW to Azure Power, and 50 MW to Adani Power.
9. Datong Solar Park | 1,000 MW | China
The Datong Solar Park is the first successful result of the Photovoltaic Power Top Runner Program. The park owner is United Photovoltaics Group Limited, whose largest shareholder is China Merchants New Energy Group.
According to the announcement issued by Datong Government, Datong is the first state-level solar energy industry area approved by the Top Runner Program to promote advanced photovoltaic product application and industrial modernization.
As the developer and operator of the project, United PV fully mobilized the internal resources of the Photovoltaic Green Ecological Collaboration Organization (PGO). The efficient monocrystalline photovoltaic components were from LERRI Solar Technology Co.
Guizhou Engineering Corporation of Power China carried out the EPC. TUV NORD took over the entire plant’s certification system and quality supervision. Huawei provided an intelligent power management system, and JIC Leasing provided financing.
10. NP Kunta Ultra Mega Solar Park | 900 MW | India
The NP Kunta Ultra Mega Solar Park extends over 7,924.76 acres of the Ananthapur district, the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. The solar park is also famous for the name Ananthapuram Ultra Mega Solar Park.
The project’s first phase was launched with a capacity of 200MW on May 9, 2016. On July 29 of the same year, another 50 MW capacity was added and operated for the service.
In 2018, an additional 750 MW was added as the project’s second phase. Tata Power Solar funded fr the operation of a 100 MW solar project in the park built on a 500-acre area in August 2016.
The solar cells and modules were manufactured in the country, thus making this park the largest commissioned solar project at the time.
The Azure Power in May 2018 added a 50 MW solar capacity. Again in July of 2018, Tata Power added another 100 MW capacity to the park.
Thus the total capacity of the park reached 500 MW. In July 2018, 750 MW was added at Rs 2.71 per kWh installation cost.
The innovation for solar energy as a greener and sustainable power source is limitless. These solar power plants are just the figment of specimens that renewable sources can run the world.
(Last Updated on July 10, 2022 by Sadrish Dabadi)