Renewable energy technology has to be one of mankind’s greatest inventions. With it, we have a cleaner form of energy that offers a slew of benefits, including reduced energy costs, improved public health and less global warming.
Out of the many renewable energy technologies we currently have, solar is the most popular one. But the other clean energy sources – wind power, biomass, hydropower, and geothermal – are not that far off behind.
Ever since the discovery of devices that harness the power of renewable energy sources, there have been numerous projects throughout the world that were created with the goal to provide a better energy future for everyone. Though all of them are beneficial for both us and our planet, only a handful are considered as breakthroughs in the renewable energy industry.
Let’s have a look at some of the world’s most amazing renewable energy projects.
PS10 Solar Power Plant in Spain
Located at Sanlucar la Mayor in Spain, the PS10 Solar Power Plant is the first commercial concentrating solar tower in the entire world. This project uses over 600 large movable mirrors called heliostats to produce an annual energy output of 23,400 megawatt hours, enough to power a lot of homes and establishments.
Tesla’s Lithium-ion Battery Storage in South Australia
Elon Musk, the controversial CEO of Tesla, announced in early 2017 that his company will build the largest lithium battery storage in South Australia, and even promised to complete the project within 100 days or it is free. The tech billionaire kept his word. As of today, Tesla’s behemoth of a battery has helped solve the statewide power crisis that plagued South Australia, generating a 100 MW output that is enough to minimise the inconveniences brought upon by day-to-day frequency variations and major power system disturbances. It has even helped electricity customers reduce their monthly electric bills.
Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System in the U.S.
Situated in the Mojave Desert, the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System is a solar thermal power facility that uses around 170,000 heliostat mirrors, which are scattered over 3,500 acres of land and focused on the boilers of three 450-foot solar power towers, to generate enough power for more than 140,000 homes during the day. Over the years, this project helped reduce significant amounts of carbon emissions, rendering a positive impact to the environment despite its massive land area.
Tesla’s Solar Facility in Puerto Rico
In the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, Tesla is one of the many organisations that stepped up to help the hurricane-ravaged country of Puerto Rico. They installed a sizeable system of solar panels that can generate up to 200 kilowatt hours of solar energy throughout the day and reserve up to 500 kilowatt hours. This project helped some of the residents of Puerto Rico survive the disaster’s early stages, proving to the entire world that solar energy is indeed one of the best and quickest solutions for power outages.
MeyGen Project in Scotland
Regarded as the world’s largest tidal energy plant, the MeyGen project, which is currently under construction, is projected to provide enough energy to power over 200,000 homes in Scotland. As of December 2016, the plant’s first turbine was activated and is currently fully operational.
Floating Solar Farm in China
The world’s largest floating solar farm is located in Huainan, a city known for its abundance in coal. The 40-megawatt power plant consists of around 120,000 solar panels that float above a flooded coal mine, and spans a total area of approximately nine miles. With its incredible capability to produce 40 megawatts of power, Huainan’s floating solar farm can supply energy for around 15,000 homes, which makes it one of the most powerful solar farms in the world.