Kamuthi Solar Power Project

India continues to develop some of the largest solar parks in the world

Kamuthi Solar Power Project
Kamuthi Solar Power Project in Tamil Nadu, India

The Kamuthi Solar Power Project in Tamil Nadu, India occupies 2,500 acres, with 2.5 million individual solar panels. Kamuthi was the largest solar photovoltaic (PV) farm in the world when it was first built in 2016. Larger solar parks have been established since Kamuthi, however, Kamuthi is notable for making India a giant in the global market of large solar PV parks.

The Bhadla Solar Park in the Bhadla village in Jodhpur district of Rajasthan, India, is currently India's largest solar park. However, China is developing an even larger solar park than Bhadla (the Golmud Desert Solar Park). Please see Green City Times' article on the Bhadla Solar Park here for more on Bhadla, Golmud, and the largest solar parks in India and China today, as well as throughout the world.

[At the time that this original Green City Times article was originally published, Kamuthi was the single largest solar PV project in the world, but since then, many larger PV projects have come online. To see a list of some of the largest solar plants in the world, please see the article on Bhadla.]

Kamuthi Solar Power Project


The Kamuthi Solar Power Project is a 648 MW (nameplate capacity) solar PV farm in Tamil Nadu, India. It initially cost US $710 million and became operational in 2016. As a result of the completion of Kamuthi, India became number three in the world for utility-scale solar PV parks, behind only the United States and China. To reach the third spot, India had to leapfrog the United Kingdom, and this solar farm gave them just enough edge.

Adani Green Energy raises USD 1.35 billion in one of Asia's largest project financing dealsThe Kamuthi Solar Power Project occupies 2,500 acres and can supply electricity for about 750,000 homes in Tamil Nadu. This plant was built and funded by Adani Power, a company that was founded in 1996 as an energy trading company, and is now India's largest private energy company.

In 2011, Adani became the largest thermal power generating company in India. Adani took their first step into power generation with a massive coal power project in Mundra (built in 4+ stages between 2009-2012); but like India as a whole, Adani has been turning more and more to renewable energy investments. This huge solar energy plant- Kamuthi - was Adani’s first venture into massive solar projects.

How Long Did it Take to Build Kamuthi?


The Kamuthi Solar Power Project is a massive structure, however, it was built in only eight months. This feat was accomplished through the dedication of 8,500 team members, who worked 24 hours a day to complete the project.

Topaz is only a slightly smaller-sized plant than Kamuthi, located in the Mojave desert. Perhaps as a result of the quick and efficient build, this project cost significantly less than the Topaz Solar Plant

Who Had the World's Largest Solar Farm Prior to Kamuthi


The record for the world's largest individual solar PV farm prior to Kamuthi belonged to the Topaz Solar Plant in California, which has a total capacity of 550 megawatts. The Kamuthi plant, by comparison, has a capacity of 648 megawatts.

Both the Kamuthi and Topaz solar farms have since been eclipsed in size by even bigger solar parks, most significantly in India and China (with some of the largest solar PV parks located elsewhere in the world, such as the US and the UAE).

India was the first country worldwide to set up an official government department of non-conventional energy resources, India's Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. India has been working towards more sustainable energy sources since the 1980s.

The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, whose mission statement is to “increase the share of clean power, increase the availability of energy and improve its access, improve energy affordability, and maximize energy equity", plans for India to generate 40% of the country’s electricity from renewable resources by 2030.

Renewable energy currently accounts for over 1/3 of electrical generation in India, and well over 1/3 of the energy production capacity in the country. India has over 70 GW of solar power capacity installed across the country.

What Plans Does India Have for More Solar Plants?


India will soon have developed the world’s newest, largest solar power parks with other ultra-high capacity solar power parks in the same country - Pavagada and Bhadla Solar Parks.

India is developing approximately 25 more large solar parks, with capacities around, or over, 1 GW; and now even two 2+GW solar parks (the Bhadla Solar Park, and the Pavagada Solar Park). India is also focusing on bringing clean electricity to remote villages and is taking on many other environmental sustainability initiatives.

India, along with China, is continuing to work on environmental sustainability measures like solar farms and other renewable energy projects as part of the transition these countries are in the process of making; from coal-based energy generation to supply a large share of these countries' electricity needs, to renewable energy like solar power.

Newly developed large solar farms in India, and throughout Asia and the Middle East, will have a substantial, positive impact on the environmental health of the planet.

Where are Some of the World's Largest Solar Parks Today?


China and India stand as world leaders in the production of large solar farms, but other countries (the US, UAE, and Egypt to name a few) also have significant large solar projects. The following list has some of the largest PV parks in the world (in an ever-changing global solar market):

"1. Bhadla Solar Park, India:

Location: Rajasthan, India

Total Capacity: Over 2,245 megawatts (MW)

Bhadla Solar Park, located in India’s arid state of Rajasthan, is a large solar power complex that has established India as a key player in the solar energy market. The park is divided into phases, each with a large capacity, and spans thousands of acres of land.

Key characteristics include:

  • Bhadla Solar Park’s massive size makes it one of the world’s largest solar power facilities, capable of powering millions of homes.
  • Solar Irradiance: Rajasthan’s strong solar irradiance provides year-round energy generation.
  • The park matches India’s ambitious renewable energy ambitions, contributing to the country’s resolve to cut carbon emissions.

2. Huanghe Hydropower Hainan Solar Park, China:

Location: Hainan, China

Total Capacity: Over 2,200 megawatts (MW)

The Huanghe Hydropower Hainan Solar Park in China exemplifies the country’s resolve to switch to clean energy sources. This solar park is an amazing example of mixing renewable energy with hydroelectric power, making it a cutting-edge and environmentally friendly energy facility.

Key characteristics include:

  • Hybrid Energy System: By combining solar and hydroelectric electricity, a consistent and predictable energy supply is created, with each system compensating for the variations of the other.
  • Sustainable Synergy: This one-of-a-kind combo cuts reliance on fossil fuels while minimising environmental impacts.
  • Environmental Protection: The solar park cuts greenhouse gas emissions significantly, aiding China’s efforts to battle climate change.

3. Pavagada Solar Park, India:

Location: Karnataka, India

Total Capacity: Over 2,050 megawatts (MW)

The Pavagada Solar Park in India’s sun-drenched state of Karnataka is one of the largest solar power parks in Asia. Because of its large capacity and excellent location, it has become an important role in India’s ambitious renewable energy aspirations.

Key characteristics include:

  • Large-Scale Capacity: Pavagada Solar Park’s huge capacity is critical to India’s ambition to boost the share of renewable energy in its energy mix.
  • Land Utilisation: Because the park is located in semi-arid land, it can make efficient use of land resources that would otherwise be wasted.
  • Economic Development: The solar park has brought economic development to the region, producing jobs and stimulating the local economy.

4. Benban Solar Park, Egypt:

Location: Aswan Governorate, Egypt

Total Capacity: Over 1,800 megawatts (MW)

The Benban Solar Park in Egypt is an outstanding project that demonstrates the country’s dedication to renewable energy despite its past reliance on fossil fuels. This massive solar installation is altering Egypt’s energy landscape and paving the road for a more environmentally friendly future.

Key characteristics include:

  • Foreign Investment: Significant foreign investments have been made in the Benban Solar Park, supporting technology transfer and improving Egypt’s renewable energy infrastructure.
  • Diversification: The solar park diversifies Egypt’s energy mix, lowering the country’s reliance on fossil resources and increasing energy security.
  • Sustainable Development: The solar park contributes to sustainable development and environmental conservation by reducing carbon emissions and boosting clean energy.

5. Tengger Desert Solar Park, China:

Location: Tengger Desert, China

Total Capacity: Over 1,500 megawatts (MW)

Tengger Desert Solar Park in China’s dry Tengger Desert shows the country’s leadership in renewable energy production. This massive solar farm has set energy production records and has become a symbol of China’s dedication to sustainability.

Key characteristics include:

  • Desert Land Use: The park effectively uses enormous tracts of desert land that would otherwise be underutilised, demonstrating the potential of solar electricity in non-agricultural settings.
  • Tengger Desert Solar Park is an important part of China’s continuing energy revolution, which is moving from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources.
  • International Collaboration: The solar park has sparked international interest, allowing for knowledge sharing and technological breakthroughs in the solar energy sector."

[LIST FROM: sunapecopower.com/top-5-largest-solar-power-plants-in-the-world-2023]

Please also see:

The 550-megawatt Topaz Solar Plant, and Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System