Australia’s largest solar farm to power Singapore

solar power

Australia’s largest solar farm to power Singapore

Solar energy is experiencing a massive transformation in Australia as it is moving into a phase of mass rollouts of large-scale solar farms. World’s largest solar farm is to be built in Australia. This major renewable energy project is undertaken by Sun Cable’s Australia-ASEAN Power Link (AAPL). It is Australia’s largest-ever construction project and is expected to be completed in 2027.
The AAPL plans to integrate three technology groups – the world’s largest battery, the world’s largest solar farm, and a 4,500km high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission system from the solar / storage facility to Darwin, Singapore, and eventually Indonesia. The developers expect to provide one-fifth of Singapore’s electricity needs, replacing its increasingly expensive gas-fired power.
Sun Cable’s Australia to Singapore Power Link, is an example of the potential of solar for our trade partners overseas. Singapore is an important trade partner with Australia. Since Singapore’s well-regulated electricity market runs mostly on gas piped from Malaysia and Indonesia and shipped as LNG which is very expensive, there will be whole hearted acceptance of this new plan. This new project is good for the environment and very important for the development of business side with Singapore.
This ambitious AUD$20 billion project will be built at a remote cattle station in the Northern Territory, Tennant Creek roughly halfway between Darwin and Alice Springs. It will be located exactly at Newcastle Waters which is a township in Tennant Creek. This massive solar farm will be visible from space after its construction. Casino mogul James Packer’s father Kerry’s 10,000 Sq km property at Newcastle Waters, has been earmarked for this solar farm. It has been found as an ideal location for the project as:
• It’s on the Adelaide to Darwin rail corridor, so it is easy to transport the enormous amount of materials to the site.
• There’s plenty of sun and not many clouds, thus providing ideal conditions for energy production.
• costs of transmitting the electricity from there to Darwin is not too high.
• extremely flat land is ideal for construction of a solar farm.
The project plans to have a 10-gigawatt-capacity array of panels spread across 15,000 hectares. It will be backed by about 22 gigawatt-hours in battery storage to ensure power supply round the clock.
Parts of the electricity generated would be sent through Overhead transmission lines to Darwin and plug into the NT grid. The bulk would be exported to Singapore via 4,500km high-voltage direct-current transmission network, including a 3,800km submarine cable running through Indonesian waters. It plans to provide 20 percent of Singapore’s power demand, with plans to continue on to Indonesia.
Sun Cable’s Australia-ASEAN Power Link project has the potential to be an important part of this nation-building journey. This is a massively exciting project with world-changing potential.
“It is extraordinary technology that is going to change the flow of energy between countries. It is going to have profound implications and the extent of those implications hasn’t been widely identified,” said Sun Cable CEO David Griffin.
The project has won major project status on 29 July, from the Federal Government, which expects to help smooth the approval process. It gained the attention of many multi billionaire investors as well. The mining magnate and philanthropist Andrew Forrest and software tycoon Mike Cannon-Brookes have invested tens of millions of dollars in this project.
The company said the project is expected to provide 1,500 construction jobs and 12,000 indirect jobs during construction, with 350 long-term operational jobs spread between the solar farm site at Elliot and Darwin.
Sun Cable has initiated the project by evaluating its environmental impact .The project has been submitted to the Northern Territory’s Environmental Protection Authority for approval. Once the approval is secured, the land construction is expected to begin in late 2023, energy production by 2026 and export by 2027.
Along with other renewable energy projects, this project would help Australia in being a super power in a carbon constrained world.
The earnest Sun Cable project could serve as an exemplar of Australian ingenuity and leadership. This ambitious export plan could generate billions and make Australia the centre of low-cost energy in a future zero-carbon world.

Why Marine solar panels?

Why Marine solar panels

Marine solar panels are getting more and more popular. They are modern solar panels that can be fixed on the boat as a source of backup power.
Advantages of marine solar panels:
• Going solar will make a huge savings on fuel as solar energy is more affordable than electricity produced by a fuel-powered generator. Maintaining autopilot, keeping navigation lights on, and powering radio systems require a lot of energy. Solar panels can provide the energy to carry out these tasks.
• Marine solar panels will maintain the boat’s battery. It will efficiently produce electric power and will never run out of energy.
• It will cut down on the sound levels while at sea. A common generator emits sound while it is powering up the boat whereas solar panels for marine usage are usually quiet.
• It doesn’t produce excess heat but sitting in a boat with a gas generator is unpleasant on hot days.
Solar panels can be used for smaller sailboats as well as larger boats. An average 30-foot boat would require about 300-350 watts of power. Depending on the energy use and size of the boat, the size of solar panels is determined.
The energy usage of a boat can be calculated by checking the labels on the appliances for the typical amp hours and volts used. A battery monitor can also be used to measure the amount of energy consumed by the appliances on the boat while in use.
Once we know the amp hours usage per day, it is easy to determine the wattage of power your solar panels need to produce. If the total usage for 8 hours is 2800Watts, it will require one 300W solar panel or three 100W solar panels.
DIY solar panels are meant to act as a battery charger to a 12-volt lithium battery, which is the typical size within a boat. But if you have a larger boat with a larger battery, you might need more than 350 watts of power.
It is a good option to install a charge controller with your solar panel system. A charge controller acts as a regulator for the amount of energy that is transferred from your solar panel into your boat’s battery. By managing the energy load it prolongs the life span of battery.
Solar panels have to be laid in places where there is full access to the sun. Any shading, such as from a sail on your boat, will reduce the amount of energy your panels produce. There are portable solar panels as well as permanently mounting panels too. As space is main constraint in a boat, it is better to go for high efficiency panels because few of them will produce the energy needed.
Depending on the space available for solar panels, one can opt to buy thin film, monocrystalline or polycrystalline panels. Thin-film panels are less efficient but they are flexible. It would be a good choice if you want to place a few panels on boat’s roof versus one panel taking up valuable space.
Monocrystalline and polycrystalline panels have higher efficiency ratings and will ensure you get the most energy from your limited space or during low-light conditions. If there is a location that can support racking, monocrystalline or polycrystalline solar panels are a better option.
There are many solar panel options available for your boat and can easily be installed DIY. By going solar on boats, one can save money with a sense of security. Marine solar panels can keep your money while having your boat’s electrical usage and battery durable and reliable. The marine life has seen some excellent solar-powered boats sail the oceans.

low-interest solar loan from Commonwealth Bank of Australia

Commonwealth Bank of Australia announces a very low-interest green loan that can be used to purchase a solar power system. With an interest rate of just 0.99%, one can buy and install renewable tech in their home. The loan is available for up to 10 years at a fixed rate and is designed to help people purchase and install eligible small-scale renewable technology such as solar panels and invertors, battery packs, and electric vehicle charging stations.
The CommBank Green Loan will launch with a pilot program this month, with a national rollout scheduled to kick off in May 2021. Customers eligible to participate in the pilot will also receive an invitation directly from CommBank to apply for the loan.
To be eligible for the new Green Loan, one must:
• Be an existing CommBank customer.
• Have an eligible CommBank home loan or investment home loan.
• Purchase renewable technology for the property that is used as security for the existing home loan.
• Register your interest at
“The CommBank Green Loan offers a historically low 0.99% p.a. secured fixed-rate loan for eligible CommBank customers to fund up to $20,000 in renewables repaid over 10 years with no setup, monthly service, or early repayment charges, adding to our already market-leading home lending solutions,” said Group Executive Angus Sullivan.
“For most customers, they will see their energy bill drop by over $500 per year, according to the CSIRO and Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme, if they switch to solar which will offset total repayments of the loan in the long-term. As Australia’s largest lender, we want to help as many customers as possible make their homes more sustainable.”
For example, an average cost of a 6.6kW solar system is around $6,000 at the moment. It could provide a financial benefit of around $1,800 in its first year and a simple payback of around 3 years, 4 months.
Being the nation’s largest bank, CommBank is committed to Australia’s renewable energy sector and supports its high-quality clean energy projects. Commonwealth Bank is one of three banks providing construction financing for UPC\AC Renewables Australia’s New England Solar Farm, which is under construction near Uralla in northern central New South Wales.
Australia’s New England Solar Farm is a 720MWac facility with 400MWh of battery storage, the first stage of New England Solar Farm’s development will be 400MWac. Grid connection and initial energy exports are expected by July 2022, with the remainder of the project to be completed over the following two years.
To reduce its own carbon emissions, CommBank was sourcing 100 per cent of its electricity from renewable energy sources for its Australian operations, 10 years ahead of an original RE100 commitment of 2030. Commbank had also increased its onsite renewable energy generation capacity to 1,510kW of solar capacity at 80 sites across the country, exceeding a 2020 target of 1,250kW.
CommBank was the first of Australia’s big four banks to formally announce a Paris-aligned 2030 date for exiting exposure to thermal coal and requires any new fossil fuel projects seeking finance to demonstrate compliance with the goals of the Paris Agreement.
CBA happily partners in all the developments that help in Australia’s transition to reduce carbon emissions. CBA is committed to developing more innovative solutions to help those customers who are looking for green, energy-efficient opportunities.

New standards for rooftop solar announced by AEMC

standards for rooftop solar

Over three million households and small businesses have taken up solar, and the demand for household batteries and electric vehicles will increase over time. This rapid uptake of solar calls for new standards to make the technology and system go hand in hand.
Having witnessed the highest record of rooftop solar installations numbers nationwide, the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) has announced compulsory new standards for new and upgraded solar PV systems connecting to the National Electricity Market so as to provide system strength and to help the electricity grid cope with the influx.
The new standards will come into effect on December 18, 2021 and would help the network handle the excess influx of solar without risking system security. As the launch is in December, manufacturers have ample time to prepare for the change.
It is applicable to all jurisdictions in the NEM – Queensland, New South Wales, the ACT, Victoria and Tasmania. As Northern Territory and Western Australia are not part of the National Electricity Market they are not affected by the changes.
These new standards will call for new technologies into the power system and at the same time help protect grid stability. With a stable system we can connect up more solar and thus result in a faster decarbonization.
According to the new standards, new and upgraded solar PV systems connected to the grid must be compliant with the distributed energy resources (DER) Technical Standards, including using a compliant inverter with low voltage ride-through (LVRT) capabilities to ensure that residential systems won’t ‘trip’ or disconnect when there are voltage disturbances on the network.
Energy Networks Australia (ENA) chief executive Andrew Dillon welcomed the new standards and said it was particularly positive that the AEMC had worked within the existing framework rather than create new rules. He said these new standards will help networks ensure the growing amounts of rooftop solar can operate efficiently and safely and more customers can connect their devices to grid.
The Energy Security Board is also considering the issue of integrating DER. It is a matter of concern how to change the pricing structure to give incentives to owners of DER to export power when it is of most value to the system.
To support a whole new energy mix we need to have a right structure. The new power grid is entirely different from the old ones we relied on earlier. We need to have a new system which helps more people to connect, protects those that don’t, and helps the system run smoothly overall. This would require restructuring the system, including the market incentives and rules.
To support the rapidly transforming energy system, AEMC has already incentivised customers to export power during times of high demand, but we need to make sure that these changes will cater for multiple scenarios. A centralise -everything policy approach to integrating new technologies will be costly for customers and cause problem in some regions.
“With ever-growing new connections of solar and batteries, it’s important we deliver solutions that can work in all the vastly different system conditions right across the country,” Dillon said.
The new standards follow a rule change request from the Australian Energy Market Operator seeking to set up a framework for AEMO to set minimal technical standards. The new framework will also be flexible, so that changes to the Australian standards over time will automatically apply.
These changes are brought by AEMC with the view to future-proof the NEM electricity system so that it can handle more solar capacity by supporting the rapidly transforming energy system.

How to calculate your solar system size

solar system size

To find the right solar system for your house, one needs to know the daily average consumption of energy of the house. The bill will denote electricity consumption in kWh. Each kW of solar you install will produce around 4 – 4.5 kWh per day. To ascertain the size of the system you need, just divide your daily consumption by this amount.
If the daily average consumption is 28.6 kWh, then the size of the system can be calculated as : 28.6 kWh (daily average)/4.5 kWh = 6.3 (6 kW system)
We can find out the total number of panels required by the house by dividing the total kW required by the output of each panel. An average solar panel has an output range of 250 W – 265 W.
In that case the calculation would be: 6 kW / 250 W x 1000 = 24. For a 6kW system, one will have to install 24 solar panels.
Variables that determine the size of the solar system are:
• home’s energy usage
• your roof’s available square footage
• solar panel wattage
• amount of sun the solar panels will receive
Based on your energy needs, Sustain Solar custom designs a solar system for you using proprietary solar design software platform, which enables us to design a system and solar plan specifically for your home.
Your savings expectations as well as other factors such as location and installation conditions have a direct impact on the number of panels one should install on your home. Locations with more ‘daylight hours’ like Perth will require less panels to achieve the same result than areas that receive less daylight hours, such as Hobart.
Most residential solar panels have power output ratings from 250 to 400 watts, the difference is it would have either 20 250-Watt panels or 16 300-Watt panels. A solar panel’s wattage represents its potential power production under ideal conditions. The systems would generate an equal amount of power if installed in the same location.
Electricity generated by solar panel system depends on factors like:
• panel efficiency
• temperature sensitivity
• shading
• angle of your roof.
If there is an average 5 hours of direct sunlight, the panels will produce roughly 1.5kW per day. The calculation being: 5 hours of sunlight x 290 watts from a solar panel = 1,450 watts or roughly 1.5 kilowatt hours per day. Solar panels’ total wattage plays a significant part in your system’s overall cost.
Owners are left with 2 options:

  1. They can go for high efficiency solar panels which would cost more than their less efficient counterparts. It is viable if the upfront cost difference is justified by the value of generating more electricity over the lifecycle of your solar system. High efficiency panels generate more wattage which means fewer panels on your roof.
  2. They can install a smaller system and still draw some electricity from the grid. This decision will in part be affected by whether you add solar battery storage.
    Solar panels with battery storage have an added advantage. It maximizes your electricity offset from the grid and ensures that you buy a minimum amount of energy from the electric company when prices are highest, thus giving a greater control of powering your energy needs. Excess electricity produced by the panels are stored in the battery. It can be used during power failures, at nights or when we need extra power.
    Sustain Solar provides customized solar plus battery storage solutions that enables you to generate, store, and manage affordable solar energy on your terms. It generates electricity and provide a backup power solution.
    Rooftop solar and home batteries build a safer, modern and resilient power grid. Clean, sustainable solutions just make life better.
    Sustain Solarwill ensure that you have the best number and style of solar panels to optimize your rooftop’s solar power production. You can rest easy with a customized solar solution from Sustain Solar. Our systems are designed for your house structure, lifestyle, energy and financial goals.
    We have the resources and experience to maximize your solar systems’ performance. We’ll guide you every step of the way from contract through installation and maintenance. And, we’ll be there to support and guide you for many years to come.
    We provide only tier 1 solar panels from manufacturers that have Australian support for customers. Sustain Solar’s solar panels and battery can help lead Australia to a cleaner and brighter future. We’ve been building toward this energy revolution for more than 16 years. We empower you to take control of your energy costs and regain freedom from your electric bill and assure a reliable energy future for your home with solar.

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