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Huge solar farm for Bungendore

By johnboy - 21 January 2011 18

The ABC informs us that Bungendore’s wind farm strewn expanse is to get 100 hectares of solar panels as well.

Member for Monaro Steve Whan says it will be the state’s largest solar farm.

“There’s 32 blocks of solar panels arranged around 2 to 3 metres above the ground, so it’s a very big development,” he said.

“It is something that will bring quite a few jobs to the area as it’s built, about five jobs in an ongoing way. But more importantly, a real contribution to renewable energy generation in this region.”

The project is being built alongside the Capital Wind Farm.

But will it look as cool as the wind turbines?

What’s Your opinion?


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18 Responses to
Huge solar farm for Bungendore
Diggety 11:53 am 25 Jan 11

OpenYourMind said :

And before you start saying baseload or nighttime, do some research on molten salt solar plants, demand shaping, baseload myth and power storage. Coal faces a similar management problem in that the plant runs at 100%, but demand varies.

OpenYourMind: This is a photovoltaic installation, not solar thermal. Baseload, etc. is a concern.

screaming banshee 9:24 am 23 Jan 11

And before you start saying baseload or nighttime, do some research on molten salt solar plants, demand shaping, baseload myth and power storage. Coal faces a similar management problem in that the plant runs at 100%, but demand varies.

Seems you have a well fitting tin-foil-hat there Open.

In reality, the grid operates as one with steam turbines turning in unison at 3000rpm to produce 50Hz. When there is a drop in load (consumption) the frequency will increase slightly until the steam injection is reduced a little, when there is an increase in load the frequency will drop slightly until the steam injection is increased. The result is that the frequency hovers all day long around the 50Hz mark by about 0.05Hz and the systems incorporate a long term (24 hr) frequency meter which displays the frequency to about 10 decimal points and adjustments are made to bring the long term frequency to a spot on 50Hz so that anything with a clock that relies on mains frequency is accurate.

As for nuclear power plants, the operation is identical except it is nuclear fuel rather than coal that heats the water to generate steam.

Think about a steam train, same process, coal burns to generate steam which provides momentum albeit piston rather than turbine. Somehow they managed to worked out how to stop a steam train, go up and down hills and so forth so your coal burning management problems are nothing but..hot air.

Several methods are in place to cope with day/night demand changes, one such is the generating capacity of the wivenhoe dam plant. During the nightime ‘excess energy’ is utilised to pump water up to a holding reservoir. During daytime peaks the water is released from the reservoir to provide extra generating capacity.

In order to deal with constant demands and the fluctuating output of the solar panels, you would require a hell of a lot more wivenhoe’s, or a substantial DC storage system.

When you factor in the cost to the environment and the sheer mass of solar generators that would be required to power a nation, I suggest it is you sir that should be doing some research.

Deref 4:17 pm 22 Jan 11

dvaey said :

The only reason nuclear is getting expensive is because 99% of the cost now goes to legal challenges.

The reason nuclear is expensive is because they’re beginning to factor in the cost of waste disposal (if and when they ever work out how to do that) and decommissioning at the end of its life. Once you take those into account you can kiss return on investment tata.

kylieonwheels 3:13 pm 22 Jan 11

dvaey wrote:

“The only reason nuclear is getting expensive is because 99% of the cost now goes to legal challenges. Just set it up in the middle of the continent and run some wires out that way.

I also have to wonder what the local airline pilots will think about a 100 hectare mirror sitting on the ground, reflecting the sun back up in their general direction? Has this even been considered?”

dvaey, it may be the legal costs, but they are still real costs.

Also, I’m not sure how much light is reflected back up to the pilots, considering that the electrical output of the PV cells depends upon as much absorption, and hence as little reflection as possible.

dvaey 10:36 am 22 Jan 11

Felix the Cat said :

Good move. Don’t know why there isn’t some sort of legislation requiring new buildings, both commercial and residential, to have solar panels on them.

If the government was prepared to subsidise this cost, Id agree. Its one thing to force new buildings to install a $500 water tank or some double-glazed windows, its another to force new buildings to install solar panels which (even for a small house) could work out to 5-10% of the cost of the building.

OpenYourMind said :

Solidarity – nuclear is a crazy solution on every level. Solar is getting cheaper every year, nuclear more expensive. The financial risk in proposing a plant in Australia would be huge – no matter where you wanted to build it

The only reason nuclear is getting expensive is because 99% of the cost now goes to legal challenges. Just set it up in the middle of the continent and run some wires out that way.

I also have to wonder what the local airline pilots will think about a 100 hectare mirror sitting on the ground, reflecting the sun back up in their general direction? Has this even been considered?

OpenYourMind 8:47 am 22 Jan 11

Pandanus, it sounds like you need to learn a little more about solar.

yoyo23 8:35 am 22 Jan 11

Ha ha ha…

Pandanus77 said :

and after the first major hail storm it becomes an art installation!

And you think everyone with a solar hot water system needs to replace it after every hailstorm?

gannet 11:31 pm 21 Jan 11

I’m all for solar, big and small, but an abiding memory of living in Bungers was the depressingly overcast days. I hope it just seemed worse than it was.

(Nuclear? find someone who’ll give the Billion + dollars to build it, then tell them they have to wait 10+ years to get any return on that investment – I think the market will leave that alone).

Pandanus77 9:08 pm 21 Jan 11

and after the first major hail storm it becomes an art installation!

OpenYourMind 6:00 pm 21 Jan 11

Solidarity – nuclear is a crazy solution on every level. Solar is getting cheaper every year, nuclear more expensive. The financial risk in proposing a plant in Australia would be huge – no matter where you wanted to build it, protests would set the project back and escalate costs.

Solar is the way of the future.

And before you start saying baseload or nighttime, do some research on molten salt solar plants, demand shaping, baseload myth and power storage. Coal faces a similar management problem in that the plant runs at 100%, but demand varies.

Deref 5:11 pm 21 Jan 11

Brilliant. 🙂

Solidarity said :

Just set up a Nuclear power plant already and everything would be sorted.

I’m all in favour of that, providing you pay for the waste disposal and the decommissioning.

Fluges 4:50 pm 21 Jan 11

Good. Solar is good.

Solidarity 4:03 pm 21 Jan 11

Awesome, more useles infrastructure.

Just set up a Nuclear power plant already and everything would be sorted.

Buzz2600 3:01 pm 21 Jan 11

About time Australia started investing in solar on a industrial scale. Now its just a matter of how long before the locals start to whinge.

Felix the Cat 1:46 pm 21 Jan 11

Good move. Don’t know why there isn’t some sort of legislation requiring new buildings, both commercial and residential, to have solar panels on them.

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