With the completion of a 300 megawatt solar power project, India has completed its largest solar power park.
One of India’s leading private renewable energy companies, Hero Future Energies, recently commissioned a 300 megawatt solar power project at Bhadla solar power park in Rajasthan. With this project, the solar park is now complete with installed capacity of 2,245 megawatts.
Bhadla solar park is significant in many aspects. The solar park saw multiple record-low tariffs during some highly competitive auctions. Projects at the solar park were developed by multiple companies through public-private partnership.
State government itself developed 745 megawatts of capacity, a joint venture company of IL&FS and Rajasthan government developed 1 gigawatt of capacity, while another joint venture between Adani Enterprises and Rajasthan government developed 500 megawatts.
The park hosts 260 megawatts owned by India’s largest power generation company — the state-owned NTPC Limited.
In May 2017, two separate auctions of 250 megawatts and 500 megawatts paved way for the lowest-ever tariff bid for a solar power project in India. The first auction saw a bid of Rs 2.62/kWh (US¢4.1/kWh), the lowest at that time. This bid was 9.2% lower than the previous lowest bid in India. Within two days the record of Rs 2.62/kWh was shattered by Acme Cleantech Solutions. The company secured 200 megawatts of capacity in the 500 megawatt auction at Rs 2.44/kWh (US¢3.8/kWh). This remains the lowest-ever solar power bid in India to date.
In December 2019, another 750 megawatts of capacity was auctioned. Tariff bids increased marginally to Rs 2.47/kWh (US¢3.8/kWh).
SB Energy, a joint venture of SoftBank, Foxconn and Bharti Enterprises, possibly owns the largest capacity in the park at 600 megawatts, secured across three auctions. Other major developers with projects at this solar park include ReNew Power, Acme Solar Holdings, Hero Future Energies, and Azure Power.