Utility Scale PV Power Plants
According to PV resources as of 2009 some 3.6 GWp of Large PV Power Plants (Utility Scale) have been in operation with average power plant output slightly over 1.8 MWp. Out of 1900 Utility Scale PV Power Plants 500 are located in Germany, 370 in USA and 750 in Spain. And the trend towards larger and large PV installations is expected to continue. These projects are highly capital intensive and normally take few years to build up to full capacity. Utility Scale PV projects requires the development of safe, reliable, affordable components and systems that meet utility expectations of performance and life cycle cost per kWh production goals. Solar Electric Generators can be categorized as high initial investment but low maintenance type of electrical generation. Many factors affect the initial investment and certainly siting of the Power Plant (location) is very important. An important part of the feasibility study is to do with determination of the suitability of the site for the installation of the power plant. The most important factors influencing the site selection are the land price, land preparation cost and grid connectivity costs. Furthermore keeping construction costs down is obviously the key to control the finished installed costs. Construction of Utility Scale PV Power Plants requires large scale project management skills and coordination with a number of stakeholders (Project Consultancy). Normally ground preparation and grid connection work can be done in sections, allowing for modular construction planning and associated efficiencies of construction (pay as you build approach) while generating revenue for the connected sections.