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Inaugurated one of Australia’s largest photovoltaic plants

Inaugurated one of Australia’s largest photovoltaic plants

One of the largest PV plants in Australia has been now inaugurated, namely the Moree Solar Farm, with a rated power of 56 MWac (70 MWp). This project has been the first utility-scale solar plant in the country to be equipped with a system that allows the PV panels to follow the path of the sun, from east to west. Moree Solar Farm uses a single-axis horizontal tracker that maximises the power output, making it possible to supply approximately 145 GWh of energy annually to around 24,000 Australian households.

The plant’s output is connected to Essential Energy’s distribution network, allowing the solar farm to supply electricity into the grid and trade in the National Market.

Although the power plant has been up and running for nearly one year, it had not celebrated its opening ceremony until now. The inauguration took place on Friday, 3rd March 2017 and brought together the main representatives of the companies and institutions involved in the project. Ben Franklin, Parliamentary Secretary for Renewable Energy, and Amy Kean, Renewable Energy Advocate, attended as the main representatives of New South Wales’ government. 

Fotowatio Renewable Ventures (FRV), the plant proprietor, financed the project with the support of the Government of Australia, through a 101.7 million Australian dollar loan. The engineering and construction of the photovoltaic plant was carried out by the company Green Light Contractors Pty Ltd, a subsidiary of Elecnor.

The project is located at one of the sunniest sites in Australia. The municipality of Moree in New South Wales takes its name from a Kamilaroi word meaning ‘rising sun’, and it was selected for this very reason, as well as for the high availability of land -its surface area is 280 hectares-, its good transport links and the proximity of a substation to connect the solar farm to the national electricity grid.

The Ingeteam supply
Ingeteam supplied the following products and services for this project:

- 28 power stations, each with a power output of 2 MW.
- The plant control system: INGECON SUN EMS Plant Controller.
- SCADA monitoring system.
- Commissioning of the plant.

The power stations supplied by Ingeteam house all the necessary equipment for field installation: two high-performance PV central inverters; a LV/MV transformer; medium voltage switchgear and auxiliary services switchgear.

The SCADA supplied by Ingeteam allows for the detailed monitoring and control of the operation of all the equipment forming part of the installation, and the power plant as a whole. For example, it is possible to check the energy production of all the PV panels, as well as the correct tracker orientation in relation to the sun.

Ingeteam also supplied its most comprehensive version of the INGECON SUN EMS Plant Controller. This smart plant controller makes it possible to carry out the most advanced strategies with regard to the regulation of active power, power factor, reactive power, voltage and frequency, amongst others.

Ingeteam is to provide technical support services from its subsidiary in Australia, which was opened in 2013 when the company commenced the supply of ten Power Stations for the Royalla Solar Farm. For a few months, with a rated power of 20 MW, this plant was the largest in Australia.