Beyond the Burn

A photographic expedition through solar farms powering
Australia’s clean energy future.

Beyond the Burn

Projected to offset 198, 000 tonnes of carbon emissions, powering 36, 000 homes with clean energy, the Bomen Solar Farm is spread across 250 hectares in Wagga, Australia

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Beyond the Burn

With a population of 101 people, a rural village in New South Wales, Nevertire is an ensemble of nature, renewable energy and thriving farm land.

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Beyond the Burn

The University of Queensland, powered by the Warwick Solar Farm runs off 100% renewable energy offsetting a $20 million annual power bill.

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Beyond the Burn

The Bannerton solar farm maximizes performance with TrueCapture’s advanced sensor, weather forecasting, and machine learning capabilities.

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The Project

Australia’s first large-scale solar farm was constructed only 9 years ago and in 2020, large-scale solar PV contributed 10.9% of Australia’s renewable energy generation. Solar’s growth is Nextracker’s growth, and our driving purpose behind this expedition is to connect with local communities and the industry at large to celebrate solar’s ascendant success in Australia and reaffirm our commitment to this market.

Supported by the Smart Energy Council in collaboration with the solar industry, Beyond the Burn is a story of triumph, captured through the solar farms powering Australia’s clean energy future, and the people behind them. Read more in the press release, here.

The Tour

Led by acclaimed Australian Geographic photographer, storyteller and adventurer Ralph Alphonso, the expedition traverses rural New South Wales, Queensland, and Victoria. Covering 4000 kms over a period of a month, Ralph will take us on a photographic journey to 6 Solar Farms.

Stop 4

Jemalong

Located 320kms from Sydney, in central New South Wales, the just commissioned Jemalong solar farm has a capacity of 62MW and is expected to produce up to 128,700 MWh of electricity per year enough to meet the consumption of more than 23,000 Aussie homes. 

Optimize CAPEX, OPEX and energy production with intelligent Nextracker solutions for lowest LCOE.
Detect programmable flood depths with Nextracker flood stow system ultrasonic sensor.
Stop 5

Bannerton

Renowned for its horticulture including almonds, citrus and grapes, Bannerton is a border town located in Victoria’s Sunraysia region, about 100kms south-east of Mildura. Located at Almas Almonds in Bannerton, the 110MW Bannerton solar farm in Victoria began construction in 2017.
The farm was developed through a joint venture between Foresight Group and Syncline Energy. UGL was awarded the $133 million, three-year contract to engineer, design, and construct stage one of the project, built on parts of an almond orchard land, otherwise unsuitable for planting. The solar panels at the farm line exactly with the rows of almond trees from the neighboring almond orchard farm.

Field-proven advanced monitoring, predictive control, and machine learning with TrueCapture.
Mitigate extreme weather risks with Nextracker’s smart project design and strategic product specifications.

The Bannerton Solar Farm is equipped with Nextracker’s TrueCapture technology, an advanced tracking algorithm which uses precise site- and installation-specific information to optimise the performance of each independent tracker row.
While onsite, the crew witnessed TrueCapture in action as the smart control system optimized the independent-row solar tracker angles as the sun came in and out of the clouds.

Behind the Scenes

Stay Tuned for the Next Stop

Last stop, Karadoc Solar Farm! Located just outside of Mildura which is the Victoria citrus capital, we visited the farm and met Anika Molesworth: A prominent agroecology scientist and farmer.

LOCATION: Karadoc Solar Farm

Stay tuned to hear Anika on benefits of solar for farmers and the environment.

Stop 3

Warwick

Located 160 km southwest of Brisbane, Warwick is a beautiful rural city known for its elegant buildings and churches and an impressive solar farm. Owned and managed by The University of Queensland, the $125 million project produces around 160,000 MWh of power a year, the equivalent of taking almost 50,000 cars off the road for a year or avoiding burning more than 20,000 tonnes of coal.
Portfolio of advanced solar trackers and intelligent software designed to optimize a PV plant performance.
Unimpeded access down each independent tracker row make way for flourishing solar grazers.
Maximize the value of solar assets with long-term view of LCOE.
NX engineering team models plants to mitigate shade loss resulting from terrain undulations and non-planar pier height surface..

The university has been officially running on 100 percent renewable power, since the 64 MW solar farm went online in 2020 offsetting a $20 mn annual power bill. Warwick Solar Farm’s other live-in occupants are the sheep, thriving within the solar farm. The sheep graze here throughout the day taking shelter underneath the panels during hot summer days. The farm depicts a quintessential ecosystem exhibiting food subsistence for the solar grazers who symbiotically keep vegetation under control essential for the panels to function to their potential.

Behind the Scenes

The design here at Warwick Solar Farm is built around the single-axis trackers. Refined with the TrueCapture system, we are able to optimize those morning and evening solar periods and we feel that overtime it will enhance the performance of the solar farm in terms of the generation that we can actually obtain at this location.
Don Drane,
Site Manager, Warwick Solar Farm.
Stop 2

Nevertire

You want country? We’ll give you country! Located in Warren Shire in New South Wales, with a population of 101 people, Nevertire is about 525 kilometres northwest of Sydney, 68 km north-west of Narromine and about 90 km from Dubbo. This is about as remote as it gets in NSW, with the town consisting of a pub (the heart of the town), a large grain handling facility, a railway line and… Nevertire Solar Farm.
The NX project engineering team works closely with our EPC partners to design the best possible project layout for lowest LCOE.
Independent row tracker systems allow for easier operations and maintenance (O&M) and agrivoltaics to thrive.
Smart stow capabilities and advanced wind engineering allow for greater risk mitigation in high wind zones.
State-of-the-art engineering delivered.

Owned by Elliott Green Power and managed by ENcome, the 132MW Nevertire Solar Farm feeds renewable energy into the national electricity grid and uses monofacial solar modules installed on Nextracker’s NX Horizon™ single axis tracking system, which tracks the sun throughout the day.

Behind the Scenes

Absolutely I’ve seen the effects of climate change worsening. Solar was the perfect diversification for the business that suited me down to the ground! I haven’t got to worry about the bushfires, winter storms, the hail storms or droughts. Solar’s allowed me to put all that stress behind me.
Brian Russ,
83 year old farmer and landowner leasing to Nevertire Solar Farm.

Brian has lived in Nevertire his whole life and inherited the farm from his father in the 1980s. The land was used for farming before an opportunity to build a solar farm was presented to him. The thought of leaving behind a solar farm for generations to come brought him peace and gratification.

Stop 1

Bomen Solar Farm

Commissioned in 2020, Bomen is a 123 MW solar farm built on 250 hectares. The farm is projected to offset 198,000 tonnes of carbon emissions, and is equivalent to powering 36,000 homes with clean energy.

Owned by Spark Renewables and managed by Beon, Bomen Solar Farm became operational in 2020 and has offtake agreements with Westpac and Flow Power to purchase 95% of the farm’s energy production in its first five years of operation.

Behind the Scenes

It’s remarkable to think of how far utility solar has come in recent years, but that is all changing now. Indications point to the segment’s underlying strength and it makes sense that it will see exponential growth with the easing of some of these challenges, and this is something the Smart Energy Council is actively pushing for.
John Grimes,
CEO of the Smart Energy Council
Our lead actor: the setting sun
A welcome visit from our friends
Green energy for green fields.
Clean future. Solar powered truck used for the tour
On the road to Bomen
Ralph unpacking night
Care for a pool match with the crew?

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I’ve put my voice behind Beyond the Burn because farmers love solar, we want more of it and the sooner Australia moves beyond fossil fuels, the better.
Anika Molesworth, former Young Farmer of the Year,
founding director and Farmers for climate Action

The Industry Comes Together