Project: Solar Power, India

Solar power in India is a fast developing industry.

Kamuthi Solar Power Project is a photovoltaic power station spread over an area of 2,500 acres (10 km2) in Kamuthi, Ramanathapuram district, 90 km from Madurai, in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. The project was commissioned by Adani Power. With a generating capacity of 648 MWp at a single location, it is the world’s sixth largest (as of 2018) solar park.

ABB commissioned five sub-stations to connect the solar park with the National Grid on 13 June 2016. The Kamuthi Solar Power Project was completed on 21 September 2016 with an investment of around ₹4,550 crore (equivalent to ₹47 billion or US$650 million in 2017). The solar plant consists of 2.5 million solar modules, 380,000 foundations, 27,000 metres of structures, 576 inverters, 154 transformers, and almost 6,000 km of cables. Construction of the structures needed to mount the solar panels required 30,000 tonnes of galvanised steel. Around 8,500 workers installed an average of 11 MW of capacity per day to complete the project within 8 months.

The entire solar park is connected to a 400 kV substation of the Tamil Nadu Transmission Corp. The solar panels are cleaned daily by a self-charged robotic system.

Given the solar resource of around 2100 kWh/(m2yr) an annual generation of 1.35 TWh/yr may be possible. This corresponds to a capacity factor (or average power) of 24% of the peak capacity 648 MWp. Assuming a technical life time of 25 years the investment cost is 700 MUSD/(251.35 TWh) = 2 US cent/kWh.