There’s a new type of farming on the increase in Australia.

Ask about farming in Australia and the answer is usually about cattle or sheep. But a new type of farming is gaining ground, one that involves hundreds of thousands of solar photovoltaic (PV) modules installed on tens of thousands of steel posts. Solar farming is big business – fast becoming one of the most cost-effective renewable energy sources on the planet.

With more than 10 gigawatts installed worldwide, First Solar is the leading global provider of PV energy solutions, and we’ve helped them to increase that wattage in Australia. We’ve already worked on:

  • Greenough River – the first utility-scale photovoltaic project in Australia, which supplies power to the Southern Seawater Desalination Plant in WA.
  • Gatton – (3MW) – one of Australia’s largest solar research facilities, located in QLD.
  • Nyngan (102MW) and Broken Hill (53MW) in NSW.

As First Solar’s consultant in Australia, we advised on meeting Australian standards, and delivered engineering design and review on all projects.

The largest to date was Nyngan, with 1,350,000 PV modules installed on 150,000 steel posts across 250 hectares. Currently the largest solar farm in Australia, it can produce electricity to meet the needs of approximately 33,000 homes. With farms as effective as this one, solar must surely have a bright future.

Our People

Mark Nankervis

Beca Technical Fellow - Structures

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Peter Cole

Associate - Civil Engineer

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