India confirmed today that it completed its solar farm in Kamuthi, Tamil Nadu, and it is taking the title of ‘the world’s largest solar power plant’ with a capacity of 648 MW – significantly more than the previous largest solar farm, the Topaz Solar Farm in California with a capacity of 550 MW.
They released some impressive images of the massive farm built on an area of 10 sq km (3.9 sq miles) – you can see a picture above and a video below.
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The size itself is impressive, but the deployment is also an accomplishment in itself and a great example of India’s commitment to renewable energy as the developing country is increasingly becoming an important producer of carbon emissions.
The Adani Group invested $679m to build the solar farm in just 8 months with 2.5 million individual solar modules, according to Aljazeera. Autonomous cleaning robots installed on the solar arrays will be cleaning the solar panels in order to keep them at their most efficient.
The plant will provide power for about 150,000 homes in the region and contribute to the country’s goal of powering 60 million homes with solar energy by 2022. While it still has a long way to go, India is definitely a leader in solar energy among developing countries with now 10 GW deployed.
The country is beginning to feel a sense of urgency, as several of its industrial hubs are starting to reach air pollution records. The country’s important use of coal, which is still its primary source of energy, is a significant contributor to both the problem and the goal of producing 40% of its power from renewable energy by 2030.
Here’s a quick video of the Kamuthi solar plant to get a scale of the project:
India will need to build hundreds of these solar power plants in order to reach its goals, but at least the quick deployment of the large plant is encouraging.