Solar farms are an environmentally friendly way to produce energy and reduce our carbon footprint.
The main question that many people ask is how much power do they generate?
Well, the short answer is A LOT!
A solar farm can generate anywhere from 200 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of energy all the way up to more than 100 million kWh in a single year, which is enough to power over 75,000 homes.
On top of the solar panels generating electricity, the heat from the sun also helps to dry crops and create hot water for homes.
These two benefits make them a great investment for any business or home owner who wants to save money on their utility bills.
And in this article, we will provide you with all the information you need about solar farms from how do they work to how much do they cost to build.
How Do Solar Farms Work?
Solar farms are simply a big pool of different solar panels gathered together on a large area of land.
These panels are then arranged in rows and columns and connected together to make a huge solar system powerful enough to produce electricity for businesses and homes.
Related article: What is a solar farm?
How Much Does It Cost To Build A Solar Farm?
The cost to build a solar farm depends on how many panels there are in the system and how much land you have available.
On average, building a solar farm costs $30 million for 100 megawatts of power capacity.
And the higher this number goes, the more money it will cost to construct.
Related article: How Long Does It Take For Solar Panels To Pay For Themselves?
How Much Energy Does A 1 Megawatt Solar Farm Produce?
This really depends on how much sunlight does the solar farm gets.
However, on average, a 1 megawatt solar farm can produce around 1460 megawatt hour (MWH) per year.
Related article: How To Increase Solar Panels Output?
How Do Solar Farms Make Money?
Solar farms make money by selling the generated electricity to users or back to the grid using the Feed-in tariff.
The average solar farm can make about $40,000 per Megawatt a year.
It’s important to mention that how much money solar farms make depends on the kWh rate in your area.
For instance, a 1 megawatt solar farm in Hawaii can make 3 times more money than its sister in Texas.
However, how much money they make depends on how many people pay for the electricity that the solar farm produces and how often it is used.
How Much Energy Can 1 Acre Of Solar Panels Produce?
As we mentioned, how much energy a solar farm produces is actually dependent on how big the farm is in terms of how many acres are used for panels.
For example, one acre alone would generate an average of 350 megawatts of energy per year if tilted at 30 degrees facing south and receiving full sun exposure.
How Big Are Solar Farms?
A typical solar farm is usually several hundred acres.
But, they can be as big as thousands of acres or even bigger in some cases.
It all depends on how much power you want to produce and the efficiency of your solar panels.
As the higher the solar panel efficiency, the more energy your produce per square foot. Thus, the less land you need.
Advantages Of Solar Farms
1. Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
Since solar farms use renewable energy, they reduce the amount of carbon emissions in our environment.
On average, a solar farm can reduce carbon emissions by thousands of pounds per day.
This makes for a healthier and more sustainable planet that we can all share together.
Related article: How to reduce your carbon footprint
2. Save You Money
Solar farms can save you money in the long run.
Many solar farms are able to generate half of their annual energy needs.
This means that they would only need to draw the other half from your local utility company, meaning you’d be saving money on electricity bills every month!
Also, if your utility company offers a feed-in tariff, it means they will buy any extra energy you produce with solar panels and give you a credit on your electricity bill for this excess power.
The savings could then add up over time and give you a reason to install more panels in the future.
3. Generate Heat
In addition to the electricity produced, solar farms also produce heat, which is used to dry crops.
This makes them very popular with farmers who want to save money on how much they spend drying their crop since the sun offers.
4. Increase Your Property Value
Lastly, a solar farm can increase the value of your property by as much as 30%.
In fact, recent studies showed that having a nearby solar farm can actually increase how much money people are willing to pay for your home by as much as $20,000.
Disadvantages Of Solar Farms
Solar farms are becoming increasingly popular, but they also have their downfalls.
First of all, solar panels can be very expensive to install and maintain over time.
Another downside is how the land used for the farm cannot then be planted with crops or other vegetation that could actually bring in an income like a regular crop field.
Lastly, it creates a lot of waste, as at the end of the panels’ lifetime, most of them are thrown away in landfills.
However, new technologies are being introduced to help making solar panel recycling more feasible.
Related article: What Are The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Solar Energy?
Overall, while there are many positive aspects of how solar farms work and how they can benefit the environment in their production of renewable energy, it’s also important to be aware that this technology is not perfect.
Solar panels are expensive to install initially and require lots of land space.