Solar power experts are taking a new look at PV solar plants after news that an Arizona utility plans to build a PV plant twice the size of the largest existing one in the US, and word that China is moving ahead on what will be the largest PV array on the planet.
With this renewed interest, we thought it was time to post a list of the 25 largest solar PV plants on the planet. We believe, and hope, this list will have a short shelf-life as larger projects go on-line.
- 60 MW Olmedilla, Spain
- 50 MW Puertollano, Spain
- 46 MW Moura, Portugal
- 40 MW Brandis, Germany
- 34 MW Arnedo, Spain
- 30 MW Osa de la Vega, Spain
- 30 MW Trujillo, Spain
- 30 MW Merida, Spain
- 28 MW Casas de los Pinos, Spain
- 27 MW Turnow-Preilack, Spain
- 26 MW Fuente Alamo, Spain
- 24 MW Sinan, S. Korea
- 23.2 MW Lucainena de las Torres, Spain
- 23.1 MW Abertura, Spain
- 23 MW Hoya de los Vincentes, Spain
- 22.068 MW Almaraz, Spain
- 21.47 MW El Coronil, Spain
- 21.2 MW Calaveron, Spain
- 20 MW Rothenburg, Germany
- 20 MW Seoul, S. Korea
- 20 MW Calasparra, Spain
- 20 MW Beneixama, Spain
- 20 MW El Bonillo, Spain
- 18 MW Olivenza, Spain
- 10.8 MW Las Gabias, Spain
The first thing you may notice about the list is Spain’s dominance. Twenty out of the top 25 are in Spain, as are eight of the top ten. ¡Imponente, España, bravo!
If you’re from the US, you’ll probably notice that our country appears on the list…um…zero times. If the aforementioned Tucson array were already built, it would come in at number twelve. Of course, by the time it’s in operation (~January 2012), it’s impossible to know what plants in other countries will also be completed, perhaps pushing us down the list.
The good news for the United States is that the potential for growth has hardly been tapped here.
Worldwide, growth has been phenomenal, especially in the last three years.
The most complete, and user-friendly, source of information about large scale PV plants is Pvresources. Their annual review, 2008, contains a wealth of information and is free as a pdf download, here.
Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) still has the potential to outstrip large-scale PV someday. But, for right now, PV is nowhere near maturity, especially in the US.