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Top 10 Gigawatts: Installed Solar Capacity (Infographic)

We’re hearing more and more about gigawatts in reference to the scale of renewable energy installations and clean energy generating capacity. Josh and Amber at decided to make a new infographic presenting a bit of information on gigawatts and installed solar capacity. Check it out:

What is one gigawatt of clean renewable energy?

One gigawatt (GW) is equal to one thousand megawatts (MW). Gigawatts and megawatts are often used for large power plants or power grids. For example, London Array, which is located around 20 kilometres off the coasts of Kent and Essex, has 175 Siemens 3.6MW turbines, with a combined capacity of 630 MW. London Array is the world’s largest offshore wind farm and is expected to produce enough electricity to power nearly half a million UK homes each year, according to Wikipedia and London Array.

Top 10 GW Solar Final 1

One gigawatt of power supply is around 1% of the UK energy supply. (Source:

China plans to have a total of 500 gigawatts of renewable energy on the grid by 2020.

There are already 25 GW of domestic wind power on the country’s grid currently. The plans will increase that number six times over to a powerful 150 GW. (Source:

The Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System that is located in the Mojave Desert in southern California is designed to deliver 377 megawatts (gross) of clean domestic electricity to more than 140,000 homes in California. There are three solar thermal plants at the Ivanpah solar complex that will collectively produce this amount of energy at any given time. It would take three projects about the size of Ivanpah to generate one gigawatt of solar power. (Source:

Fukushima produced more than 4 gigawatts of power

There were four nuclear reactors at the Fukushima II Nuclear Power Plant. Each of the reactors had an electric power generation capacity of 1,100 MW (with a net output capacity of 1,067 MW each). This equates to just over one gigawatt of power generation capacity by each reactor. (Source: Wikipedia)

Fukushima Mirai, which is an immense floating offshore wind project located 20 kilometres off the coast of Fukushima, is planned to support 132 floating turbines. Each turbine is capable of producing 2 MW of energy. If the project is completed as planned, the wind farm will have a power generation capacity of nearly 264 MW. (Source: Windpower Offshore).

It would take four wind projects the scale of Fukushima Mirai to produce one gigawatt of renewable energy.

As occurrences of gigawatts of renewable energy become more common, the folks at 1Sun4All will produce more infographics. Stay tuned!

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