Aura Power is currently developing solar farms in Canada, USA, Italy, Portugal, Lithuania, Republic of Ireland, Spain and the UK. We have secured 1,300 MW of grid capacity and successfully taken 630 MW through planning.
As well as providing clean renewable energy, our solar farms offer a number of benefits to local people and wildlife.
As we all know, we are in a climate and ecological emergency and it is important to recognise why solar can play such an important role in the future of the energy sector and our environment.
Governments across the globe are setting legally binding targets to reduce carbon emissions. The International Energy Association states that the path to net zero requires the equivalent of installing the world’s current largest solar park roughly every day for the next 9 years.
Solar power is proven to be the cheapest form of new electricity generation available and without subsidies, this helps to reduce power prices.
As well as generating clean, renewable energy, solar farms can enrich local biodiversity, continue the use of agriculture via sheep grazing and restore soil conditions.
Solar photovoltaic (PV) panels, predominantly made from silicon crystals, convert sunlight into electricity, providing a clean and stable source of power. Unlike wind farms, solar PV generates electricity in a relatively predictable manner, i.e. during the daytime when energy consumption is typically higher.
Solar is already the world's fastest growing energy technology and the efficiency of panels is improving year on year. Most of today's panels see an efficiency of around 20-25%. New technologies, however, are pushing efficiencies as high as 47%.
The electricity produced from the panels is then converted from DC to AC using inverters. The voltage is then stepped up through a transformer to be distributed on the electricity network to utility services, homes and businesses.
As well as generating clean renewable energy, solar farms provide many opportunities to boost local biodiversity, which in turn benefits local wildlife. The soil is allowed time to restore with no pesticides from previous intensive farming practices and sheep are able to graze beneath and around the panels.
We offer a community benefit fund at many of our sites allowing some of the income generated from the solar farm to be directly pumped into the local community. We encourage the money to be spent locally on educational, social and environmental projects.
We also work with Earth Energy, a specialist in organising school trips to solar farms and educational sessions linked to the National Curriculum.
Solar Energy UK, the UK's solar industry association have produced a helpful myth-busting fact sheet on the benefits of solar, providing a range of examples of how solar can benefit economic activity, local communities and the natural environment.Check it out by clicking here.
A solar farm comprises a series of solar panels on pole mounted tables that form solar arrays. Additional equipment such as transformers, inverters, fencing, and a small substation, etc. would also be installed in order to connect the solar farm into the local electricity grid.
Solar panels convert sunlight into electricity, which is then exported directly into the electricity network. In order to maximise electricity production, the panels will be arranged in a southerly direction, and will be tilted at an angle to maximise the energy collected from sunlight.
We are in a climate and ecological emergency! Aura Power is committed in helping countries meet their Net Zero emissions targets by 2050.
As we transition to a Net Zero economy, electricity demand is forecast to increase three-fold due to the move away from fossil-fuel-based heating and transport. Solar power is proven to be the cheapest form of new electricity generation available which helps to reduce energy prices for everyone.
As well as generating clean, renewable energy, this solar farm will enrich local biodiversity, continue the use of agriculture via sheep grazing and restore the soil to an even better condition than during its previous use under intensive farming, after the solar farm has been decommissioned.
Solar farms are very quiet. It is only the inverters which make a slight noise and they only do so during operational hours (when it is sunny) so do not make any noise at night. This noise at a 10m distance can be comparable to an air conditioning unit and usually dissipates entirely after around 100m.
Solar panels are designed to absorb light rather than reflect it. Any glare is minimised through using translucent coating materials to improve light transmittance through glass. In fact, grass produces more glare than a PV array.
No - solar is a passive technology which doesn’t produce any harmful by-products. All electrical equipment we use meets the Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Directive and is CE marked.
After the solar farm is built, which usually takes 4-6 months, there is very little maintenance and therefore vehicular activity is minimal. A traffic management plan will be produced for the construction of the solar farm and a contact number will be made available for local residents to call should they have any issues
A typical rural deer fence is used for security. Small openings in the fence allow small mammals including badgers to enter the site. The location of these will be determined by an ecologist where the most commonly used animal tracks are found. Deer and larger mammals are excluded as due to their size they could damage themselves and the infrastructure.
Analysis by the Solar Trade Association suggests that a 50MW solar farm would provide 15 full time jobs equivalent through the supply chain. Locally there will be job opportunities during construction and also contractors from outside the area will use local facilities such as shops, cafes etc. We welcome local contractors to get in touch for services such as security, traffic management, landscaping and maintenance.
The solar panels are comprised of glass, silica, aluminium, steel, copper and plastic which are largely recyclable with a good salvage value. Approximately 96-99% of the solar panel can be recycled.
For a 49.9MW site it would take approximately 1.1 years to pay off the energy debt from the manufacturing process. There are several academic studies which show this.
No. A flood risk assessment is carried out as part of our assessments. The panels have small gaps in between to allow the rain water to drip through, dispersing the surface water run off more evenly. A well managed and healthy grass sward beneath the panels allows the water to be absorbed into the ground. Swales may also be included to help alleviate any existing surface water.
We, members of the UK solar energy industry, condemn and oppose any abuse of human rights, including forced labour, anywhere in the global supply chain. We support applying the highest possible levels of transparency and sustainability throughout the value chain, and commit to the development of an industry-led traceability protocol to help to ensure our supply chain is free of human rights abuses.
The costs of solar power have fallen sharply and it is now the cheapest form of new electricity generation both globally and in the UK. Therefore, solar contributes overall to a lowering of power prices across the country. It is not yet possible for local sales of electricity direct from solar farms, although there is legislation going through parliament at the moment that may make this possible in future.
We offer a voluntary community benefit fund to be spent locally on environmental and social projects. We are also offering an educational fund for local school visits in the UK and workshops to inspire the younger generation.
Another benefit is the increase in biodiversity - many councils have declared ecological emergencies and solar farms have the ability to enhance biodiversity and allow wildlife to flourish.
No - only emergency lighting at the substation compound which will only be used in case of emergencies (likely less than once a year).