German Shell Solar Project Goes the Distance

If the multi-MW capacities of new solar projects in Germany don’t reinforce the booming industry, try length. The latest big solar project will span one continuous distance over 10 miles long. A partnership led by Germany’s Shell Solar division plans on building the project which they say would be the world’s largest single-connected solar photovoltaic (PV) plant.

Shell is teaming up with Martin Bucher Project Development and CommerzLeasing and Immobilien AG to build the 10 MW solar facility at a former military area near Pocking, Bavaria. The solar plant will consist of approximately 62,500 modules and will deliver electricity to almost 3,300 households in Germany per year. Shell Solar will lead in the construction of the plant, and is responsible for the turnkey project. The 40 million euro project is made possible through special purpose companies set up by CommerzLeasing und Immobilien AG. “This is a new milestone in the solar PV business and in the development of large solar plants in particular,” Wolfgang Lange, manager Shell Solar GmbH. “After the launch the World’s first large solar plant of 5 MW near Leipzig, we again illustrate with this project, our leading competence and technology experience in this 10 MW power station. It is an important achievement and will significantly contribute to the economies of scale and lowering the price of solar PV.” The power plant consists of six sub plants of each 1,667 MW, which are linked in parallel to the 20 kV grid of the utility E.on Bavaria. The modules will be mounted on aluminum structures, with a total length of approximately 16,5 kM. The system has been especially designed to deliver an optimized energy output and follows the successful master-slave inverter concept, developed by Shell Solar. Martin Bucher Project Development, who initiated and coordinated the project worked closely together with the responsible authorities of Pocking and Passau enabling a smooth process of planning and consent application. Martin Bucher said the solar plant saves around 10,000 ton of CO2 per year, an amount equal to a CO2 performance of 1,000 hectares of woods. “Solar PV is setting the trend for solar projects on a large scale, not only because it is an environmental friendly way to supply energy, but it also generates jobs,” Christian Leib of CommerzLeasing und Immobilien AG. Construction will begin in August with completion expected in March 2006.
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