In early 2010 the Union govt of India launched National Solar Mission to increase the usage of solar power in India. In June 2010 India’s biggest solar photovoltaic plant was inaugurated near Bangalore.
The 3-megawatt solar power plant in Yellasandra village, 80 km east of Bangalore, comprises 13,500 solar panels, each with a 23-watt capacity. The Karnataka Power Corporation’s 15-acre, Rs 59-crore plant can generate half-a-million units every month in summer, enough to light up 20 villages. The power generated will be distributed in Yalensandra, it has the capacity to provide energy to 600 pump sets of 10 HP and cover around 1,000 acres. This is a huge boon to Karnataka as the state is power starved.
The Yellasandra plant will generate 4 million units of power per year. This project costed Rs 58 crore. The campus has an auditorium and solar training centre. During the construction, workers were employed from Yalesandra village with the help of panchayat members. This should set an example to other projects across the nation.
Other than periodic cleaning the maintenance cost of this plant is almost zero. The solar photo voltaic (PV) plant hold a guarantee of 25 years. After 10 years one can expect a degration of 10%, after 25 years another degration of 10%.
The plant is expected to generate 4,000 to 18,000 units per day, depending upon the availability of sunlight. From Jan to June 2010 the plant has generated 2.9 million units.
The govt is thinking of similar projects in Hampi, Shimoga, Mandya, Bijapur, Haveri and Tumkur. Each of these plants would cost Rs 15 crore.
The National Solar Mission targets 20,000 MW by 2022. Solar energy also reduces the pollution caused by lighting kerosene lamps.
Yellasandara near Kolar is in Bangarpet taluk.