Cultana Solar Farm

Cultana Solar Farm is a proposed solar farm to be constructed north of Whyalla by SIMEC Energy Australia (part of the GFG Alliance). Construction is expected to begin early in 2020 after development approval was granted in May 2019.[1]

cultana Solar Farm
Coordinates32°54′S 137°36′E / 32.9°S 137.6°E / -32.9; 137.6
Construction cost350 million A$ (2019)
Owner(s)SIMEC Group
Solar farm
Solar tracker
Site area1,000 ha (2,500 acres)
Power generation
Nameplate capacity280 MW 

The contract for engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) was let to Shanghai Electric in June 2019 with construction expected to take 12 to 15 months to complete.[2] The site is north of Whyalla, on both sides of the Lincoln Highway. It will consist of a total of 925,000 solar modules, each 1 x 2 metres and 35 mm thick, mounted in groups of 85 modules in a north-south orientation on single-axis trackers. Each tracker will be 90 metres long, with 3 metre access between them, and a maximum height of four metres. The total area across the two sites is about 1,000 hectares (2,500 acres). The southern site will generate 70MW at 33kV and be connected via overhead cables to the northern site which will generate 210MW and have a 33kV/275kV substation connected to ElectraNet's Cultana substation.[3]

The solar farm will be connected to the National Electricity Market but its primary customer will be the Whyalla Steelworks which is also owned and operated by members of the GFG Alliance.[4]

Cultana Solar Farm will be Shanghai Electric's first project in Australia, and is expected to be Australia's largest solar farm at the time of its completion, with a capacity of 280 MW.[5]

A test array of almost 200 panels was installed in late 2019 to provide more detailed information in advance of the main construction phase.[6]


  1. ^ Mazengarb, Michael (4 June 2019). "Gupta secures China EPC contract for $350 million Cultana solar farm". Renew Economy. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  2. ^ Maisch, Marija (3 June 2019). "Shanghai Electric to build Gupta's 280 MW Cultana Solar Farm". pv magazine. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  3. ^ "Cultana Solar Farm". NS Energy. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  4. ^ "Cultana Solar Farm". SIMEC Energy Australia. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  5. ^ Shi Jing (4 June 2019). "Shanghai Electric set to build solar farm for SIMEC Energy Australia". China Daily. Shanghai. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  6. ^ Mayfield, Louis (20 November 2019). "Solar farm nears construction". Whyalla News. Retrieved 8 January 2020.