India-based, thin-film PV manufacturer Moser Baer has installed a 5MW solar farm, equivalent to powering 70,000 households, covering an area of 60 acres in Tinwari, Jodhpur district, India. This is part of the US$1 billion the company has promised the Indian states of Gujarat, Orissa, West Bengal and Rajasthan, for projects worth 300MW. The farm was built under the solar subsidy scheme, the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM). The opening ceremony was attended by the renewable energy minister Dr. Farooq Abdullah and Ashok Gehlot, chief minister of Rajasthan.
The project will be generating approximately 92,000,000 units of electricity per annum and saving carbon emissions equivalent to 8,400 tonnes annually. 13,000 amorphous silicon thin-film modules, delivering 380W, have been used, claimed to be best suited for the local conditions resulting in better power generation.
Inaugurating the solar farm, Dr. Abdullah said, “We thank Moser Baer for setting up the solar farm. The company is currently working on cutting edge R&D for generating solar energy indigenously in the country and I am sure that the state of Rajasthan will prove to be a golden state towards this effort. It is critical that our domestic companies manufacture solar modules that can be deployed at different solar farms across the country which will not only generate alternate source of power which is clean but will also help generate employment and create a manufacturing ecosystem within the country.”
Delivering the keynote address, Gehlot, the chief minister said, “The state of Rajasthan will be a frontrunner to produce electricity through solar energy. Presently, Rajasthan is producing 80MW of solar energy and by next March it aims to produce 150MW. Barmer, Jaisalmer and Phalodi is making history in the generation of Solar Energy and going forward we aim to make Rajasthan a solar hub of the country.”
Deepak Puri, CMD, Moser Baer India said, “The strong ‘bundling cost’ mechanism that has been developed and adopted to offset the higher cost of solar power along with the conventional power available with NVVN is a testimony of MNRE’s commitment, towards providing a significant boost to the solar power sector.”
K N Subramaniam, chief executive officer, Moser Baer Solar Systems said, “Government of India has launched an outstanding initiative in promoting solar power through JNNSM in January 2010, which is an important turning point in improving energy availability across the country, in particular, rapidly reaching power to many rural areas which are looking for electric power to achieve development. To promote rapid solarisation of India, I would like to urge the MNRE to create a special corpus for funding solar projects, as financing these projects has been a major bottleneck.”