Solar PV farms are photovoltaic grid-connected power generating systems. Also known as solar farms or solar parks, they generate electricity by directly converting sunlight into electricity. They consist of ground-mounted solar panel units, and they are spread over large areas of land. Engineers and Research experts at MMG Engineering work together to develop environmentally friendly electricity solutions. This includes solar PV farms
Solar farms differ from energy-generating sources like hydropower, wind power, or coal-powered electricity generation systems. Those sources generate energy from water, fossil fuels, wind, etc., to run turbines that, in turn, produce electricity. They also differ from solar thermal energy farms that concentrate the energy gathered from sunlight into a heat transfer fluid used to convert heat into electricity.
Here’s how a solar farm generates electricity: Solar farms use solar panels that generate DC (direct current). For electricity to be usable, it needs to be converted to Alternating Current AC. Electricity from solar panels is converted to AC using inverters. This electricity is then transferred to a nearby grid station. The electricity is distributed to homes, offices, and other setups from these grid stations.
Solar farms are utilized in electricity generation for nearby communities. They can supply electricity through grid stations to homes, business setups, and even factories. A solar farm in a large area near a community results in lower overall costs and monthly utility payments than individual rooftop solar panel systems.
Quaid e Azam Solar Park in Bahawalpur was the first solar photovoltaic power station established in Pakistan. Constructed in 2015, this $131 million project generates 100MW and has almost 400,000 solar modules. Since then, 8 more solar photovoltaic farms have been established, and even more, are under construction.
The selection of location is crucial when considering the installation of solar farms. Pakistan’s large areas of flat lands, fields, and year-round climate are ideal for solar energy generation because of many regions’ longer summers and dry climates. Despite this, most of its electricity is generated through fossil fuels, and only a little above 1% is generated by solar power. The potential for development is immense. The only thing seemingly holding this back is a lack of political will and support.
Solar PV farms are a realistic solution to many of Pakistan’s problems, especially those that center load shedding, fuel consumption and its costs, and environmental conservation. Here are some of their benefits.
● While the installation costs are incredibly high, they are in high demand because of the long-term benefits and efficiencies.
● Since solar farms are located near the area they supply energy to, they have the added advantage of reduced power loss due to transmission.
● Solar parks cost very little to maintain and are pollution free.
● Solar energy is also a renewable, easily accessible, inexhaustible energy source.
● Once established, the estimated lifespan of a solar farm is around 25 to 30 years. However, this can be increased by regular maintenance and repair.
Solar PV farms are one of the most environmentally friendly and sustainable long-term energy solutions. Pakistan has a lot of potential and bright prospects in terms of adopting solar farms as a solution to electricity supply problems. Already gaining traction in several areas of Panjab, the hope is that they’ll become the norm across the entire country.