In this day and age, there are many people who turn to solar panels for electricity. Since sunlight is free, it’s a far more interesting installation to acquire—especially because it’s cheaper, cleaner and safer. The United States isn’t the only location to make use of the sunlight, but other countries around the world. Solar farms are built everywhere to produce, sell and offer electricity to those using it. Despite the fact of there being numerous farms, there are five that hold the name as largest at the top of the list.
5. Desert Sunlight Solar Farm, United States
Six miles north of Desert Center, California, the farm was constructed in September 2011 developed by First Solar, Inc and co-owned by NextEra Energy Resources, GE Energy Financial Services and Sumitomo Corporation of America. The project size is 550 megawatts (MW) and has brought energy to roughly 160,000 homes in the state of California. While the Desert Sunlight Solar Farm is offering so much energy and removing about 300,000-metric tons of carbon dioxide, it’s almost as though 60,000 cars have been removed off of the roads. The farm is run by the Federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM).
© U.S. Department of the Interior
4. Topaz Solar Farm, United States
Similar to Desert Sunlight Solar Farm, Topaz Solar Farm is located in Santa Margarita, California and owned by Berkshire Hathaway Energy. It was developed by First Solar, Inc. The project was completed in November 2014 and reached up to 550 MWs. The energetic plant is nearly 9.5-square miles with rows and rows of solar panels that occupies the land. Each panel is placed together and held up by steel columns. The Topaz Solar Farm brought electricity to 180,000 homes in California and taken away about 407,000-metric tones of carbon dioxide.
© Stuart Rankin
3. Solar Star, United States
At the top of largest solar farm in the United States, Solar Star, also known as Antelope Valley Solar Project was developed by SunPower and owned by Berkshire Hathaway Energy. The plant’s construction started in January 2013 and was complete by June 2015 — co-located in Kern and Los Angeles counties in California. Initially, the farm is presented as two projects — Solar Star I (285 MWs) and Solar Star II (276 MWs). In total, the entire farm holds about 579 MWs. Stretching across 3,230 acres of land, the plant contains 1.7-million SunPower panels. Every panel on the farm has brought electricity to 255,000 homes in California and taken away 570,000 tons of carbon dioxide.
© Rennett Stowe
2. Kamuthi Solar Power, India
Located in the state of Tamil Nadu, India, the Kamuthi Solar Power Farm comes second to the largest solar farms in the world. It’s 3.9-square miles contains roughly about 2.5-million individual solar panels. The plant holds 648 MWs. It was built within eight months and developed by the Adani Group. The Kamuthi Solar Power Farm brought power to 150,000 homes in India—giving light and energy to homes in need.
1. Longyangxia Dam, China
As for the largest solar farm in the world, Longyangxia Dam tops the list. The farm is located in Gonghe County in Qinghai, China. It holds two gigawatts (GW) which is equivalent to 2,000 MWs. The China Minsheng New Energy Investment Co. invested $2.34 billion in the farm that includes about six-million solar panels spread across the acres. It took nine months to build and was completed by December 2013. However, their plan is to reach 100,000 MW by 2018—wanting to keep the name as the largest solar farm on earth.
© Sharon Chen
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Cover photo © Michael Mees