Solar Energy Making New Inroads in Iran's Hamedan

(Wednesday, February 6, 2019) 08:59

Four new solar farms in cities and towns in western Hamedan Province were inaugurated on Tuesday.

“The four farms, each with production capacity of 7 megawatts, supply 28 MW of electricity to the local grid per day,” IRNA quoted managing director of Hamadan Power Distribution Company as saying.


Two of the plants are in the city of Kabudarahang, and the other two in Famenin and Qahavand. Domestic private companies built the farms with a total foreign investment of $32 million, Mohammad Mahdi Shahidi said.


Each plant generates 14,000 megawatt hours of electricity per annum, helping reduce the emission of greenhouse gasses. If the same amount of energy was to be produced by thermal power, 9,600 tons of carbon dioxide would burn annually, he said.


Likewise, each plant saves consumption of fossil fuel (3.95 million cubic meters) and water (3,060 cubic meters).


Shahidi added that a combined heat and power plant (CHP) was also launched in Kabudarahang County.


A CHP plant, also known as cogeneration system, generates electricity and useful thermal energy in a single, integrated system. In such a plant, a fossil fuel such as oil or natural gas is burned in a giant furnace to release heat energy. The heat is used to boil water and make steam, the steam drives a turbine, the turbine drives a generator, and the generator makes electricity.


Cogeneration is a more efficient use of fuel. Employing the system, wasted heat from electricity generation is put to some productive use.




To boost renewables, six big solar power plants with a capacity of 45.5 MW and more than 22 rooftop photovoltaic power stations have been installed in Hamedan, 330km west of Tehran 




Shahid Mofatteh Power Plant in Hamedan supplies the lion’s share of electricity to the province.


However, being a thermal plant, it has consumed massive amounts of water over the years and almost all the land around it has turned into desert. An area once suitable for farming is now barren land.


People of the region hope the new solar farms will gradually replace the thermal plant. 


To boost renewables, six big solar power plants with a capacity of 45.5 MW and more than 22 rooftop photovoltaic power stations have been installed in Hamedan, 330km west of Tehran. 


Renewables have a small share in Iran's power industry that is largely fossil-fuel based. Only 1,000 megawatts of the total 82,000 installed capacity is produced via renewables.


Energy experts say there is no bigger and more sustainable energy source than the sun. That is why an increasing number of countries are fast moving toward big solar plants.


With more than 300 sunny days in a year, Iran has huge potential to harness renewable energy, including geothermal, solar and wind power.


According to Energy Ministry data, the government has plans to increase renewable power to 7,500 MW by 2030.