Sunraysia Solar Farm, New South Wales, Australia - Project details and construction updates

Last Modified: Sat Apr 18 2020 08:11:09 GMT+0530 (India Standard Time)
  • 250 MW
    planned installed capacity of the proposed solar farm with battery storage, located around 17km south of the Balranald town centre and around 140km south east of Mildura, within the Balranald Shire Council Local Government Area (LGA).
  • 529 GWh
    proposed to be generated per year.
  • 50,000
    approximate number of households that can be powered by the farm each year.
  • 430,000 tonnes
    estimated reduction in CO2 emissions each year, once the farm is operational.
  • 1,000
    hectares of private freehold land available for use. The site is connected to a 33/220kV substation co-located on-site where the energy is transferred to the Transgrid 220kV Balranald Substation. From there the energy is then transferred either towards Buronga/VIC or Darlington Point/NSW.
  • 755,000
    Jinko HC Cheetah series solar modules will be used. Inverter equipment will be supplied by Schneider while NEXTracker NX Horizon smart solar tracker will deliver the single axis tracking technology. More than 4,000 km of cables and 100,000 piles will be installed over a development footprint of up to 800 hectares.
  • 4
    major organisations involved: 1) Project owner and developer: John Laing Group,Maoneng 2) EPC and O&M: Decmil Group 3) PPA: AGL, UNSW.
  • $350 million
    estimated project cost. Debt financing has been secured from Nord L/B, ING, National Australia Bank, Mizuho Bank and Bank of China.
  • 400
    peak jobs during construction phase of 12 - 18 months.
  • ?
    FTE during operational phase.
  • Mar 2018
    Planned start of construction with likely completion in 2019.
  • 20 Jun 2017
    Planning approval obtained.
  • 05 Dec 2017
    Decmil Group announced it had entered into a ~$275 million Memorandum of Understanding with the project’s developer, Maoneng Australia, to design and construct the Sunraysia project.
  • 11 Dec 2017
    Maoneng Australia signs power purchase agreement (PPA) with utility AGL Energy for 300MW of PV projects in New South Wales. The PPA is for the supply of up to 800,000 MWh of renewable energy per annum for 15 years from at least two projects including the Sunraysia Solar Farm.
  • 15 Jan 2018
    University of New South Wales (UNSW) signs 15 year PPA to procure 124,000 MWh of electricity each year from the farm. The procurement will meet 100% of the campus' need.
  • 07 Oct 2018
    Maoneng announces it has secured financial close for the project on the back of a long-term equity partnership with Maoneng and U.K.-based infrastructure investor John Laing which will invest $108.6 million in the project, taking a 90.1% stake. Debt financing has been secured from Nord L/B, ING, National Australia Bank, Mizuho Bank and Bank of China.
  • 07 Oct 2018
    Decmil Group has also been officially awarded a $277 million contract to undertake engineering, procurement and construction as well as operations and maintenance of the solar farm.
  • 22 Jan 2019
    Construction begins. Decmil announces its “all systems go” at the site. “The security fence around the site (1000ha); and all staff have mobilised into the new onsite office. The first pile has been driven with thousands to follow!,” the company said in a LinkedIn post.
  • 20 Feb 2019
    Ground breaking ceremony held on-site with Morris Zhou, Ray Davy, Scott Criddle and Duncan Jewell initiating the public sod-turning for the project. The event was graced by a ‘Welcome to Country’ from the Muthi Muthi Nation Traditional Landowner Representative – Mary Pappin Senior, together with the Infrastructure Development Director of Balranald Shire Council Ray Davy.
  • Aug 2019
    With all the earthworks, trenching and cable laying complete and the installation of more than 755,000 JinkoSolar 255W Cheetah mono PERC modules, well over the halfway mark, the completion of one of the largest solar farms in the world is set to be operational just in time for summer.
  • 13 Aug 2019
    With the last of all 755,039 solar panels installed, the mechanical construction phase is now complete. 95% of electrical installation is complete too.
  • Dec 2019
    Disputes surface between Decmil and project owners John Laing and Maoneng over delays in commissioning. Decmil says that all plant, equipment and components necessary for the operation of the works are now complete, and delivered on time but has so far failed to obtain R1 registration of the project from the Australian Energy Market Operator.
  • Mar 2020
    Decmil has threatened further action in the ongoing dispute over payments. The project is one of dozens of large scale wind and solar projects to have their connection and commissioning pushed back by months, or in some cases years.