Australia’s Sun Cable plans to build a plant that could produce photovoltaic modules for the world’s largest solar storage project, Australia-ASEAN Power Link.
From pv Australia magazine
The Singapore-based consortium behind the Australian-ASEAN Power Link (AAPL) for AU $ 26 billion ($ 19.7 billion) has filed an application with the Australian Northern Territory Development Consent Authority for the construction of a Sydney-designed Maverick solar cell plant based on 5B.
A prefabricated, pre-assembled Maverick system was selected as the module of choice for the AAPL project, a 14 GW solar farm and approximately 33 GW battery storage system to be built near Elliott in the Barkley area of Australia’s Northern Territory.
Sun Cable said the first phase of the proposed facility will pilot a semi-automated production line that will provide the ability to supply Maverick solar systems to other solar farms across northern Australia. In a second phase of development, the facility will be expanded to produce systems for AAPL, and a logistics and distribution center will be established to transport materials and equipment by rail to Sun Cable’s 14 GW solar farm site.
“This application is an important step in the ongoing development of the Australian-ASEAN Power Link, a solar infrastructure network that will provide Darwin and Singapore with an affordable, competitively managed, large volume of renewable electricity from 2026 and 2027, respectively,” Sun Cable said.
Sun Cable plans to build a manufacturing facility in Darwin’s East Arm Business Park, a location chosen for its proximity to the city’s port. The company said it will now work with ICN-NT to select an implementation partner for the project.
The proposed AAPL includes a 14 GW solar farm to be built on a 12,000 hectare site in Powell Creek. It will have an approximately 33 GWh battery. The project is expected to provide electricity to the Darwin region and Singapore through a 4500 km high voltage DC grid, including a 750 km overhead power line from the solar farm to Darwin and a 3800 km submarine cable. from Darwin to Singapore via Indonesia. The project is expected to generate enough renewable electricity to power more than 3 million homes a year.
The development app is the latest milestone in the project. The Australian federal government has also designated the project as a priority initiative, and Sun Cable has already signed a development agreement with the Northern Territory government.
Although the prospects for the project are favorable, the company has not received any indication that any country has signed up to buy electricity from it. Nonetheless, Sun Cable remains confident, stating that construction on the project will begin immediately after the financial closure in October 2023 and commercial operations will begin in 2027.
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