ABOUT SOLAR

Dubbo Solar Farm in NSW shows how well agriculture and solar can combine, bringing some unexpected benefits. Neoen are proud to be leading the way in ‘agrisolar’.

A short video about this experience can be found in this video.

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There are no issues with sheep-grazing co-existing with solar farms. It’s an opportunity and win-win for farmers and renewable energy producers.

Tom Warren, Land Owner
Dubbo Solar Hub in NSW

What is Agrisolar?

Agrisolar is the co-existence of agriculture and solar power generation on the same land.

All of Neoen’s solar farms including the Numurkah Solar Farm have partnerships with local landowners to graze sheep on the solar farms.

ABOUT SOLAR FAQ’s

How do solar panels work?

When photons of light shine on a solar panel, they knock electrons free on an electrical circuit and produce electricity.

 Inverters regulate the accumulation of electricity from a selection of solar panels. The substation distributes the electricity to the grid.

 The angle at which the light hits the panel affects the amount of energy that can be harvested from it. This is why tracking systems help to optimise solar generation.

What is a solar array and what does it look like?

A solar array is a collection of solar panels that generate electricity as a system.

Dimensions: Most solar panels are 1m wide by 2m long. Arrays of solar panels are usually 30, 60 or 90 meters long.

 Height: Depending on final design decisions and the time of the day (due to movements from solar trackers), the height of panels is likely to be between 1.5 and 3.5 metres.

 Spacing: Depending on final design decisions, rows of panels may be spaced 6 to 14 metres apart.

 Wide spacing reduces shadowing on the panels in the early morning and late afternoon, and also allows the land to continue to be used for sheep grazing.

Will the solar array alter the landscape?

We understand that solar arrays do alter the visual character of an area. This is why we work with communities to ensure they have the lowest possible impact on visual amenity.

 We encourage individuals and groups with questions about visual impact and solutions to engage with us early.

 Overall, we believe that emissions reductions – as well as the immediate and long-term benefits that solar farms bring to communities – offset some loss of visual amenity.

Will the solar panels generate glare?

Photovoltaic panels are designed to absorb light and reflect as little light as possible (generally around 2%) to maximise their efficiency.

 This is why solar farms are not considered reflective and have been installed at or near a number of airports.

Are there any health risks associated with solar farms?

Solar panels are placed on more than 25% of Australian homes, and have been on homes across the world for the past 15 years.

 No health issues have been associated with solar panels, and the Goyder Renewables Zone will use the same type of technology.

 

Can noise from solar farms affect local residents?

Solar farms create only very slight audible noise during operations (from the inverters).

 People in nearby dwellings will not be able to hear it.

How is any potential fire risk managed?

There is very minimal fire risk associated with photovoltaic panels or solar farms.

 There is also a cleared vegetation zone around the edges of the solar farms to prevent fire spreading. This is complemented by a strict vegetation management plan.