With environmental issues and solar-powered innovation at the forefrontof everyone’s mind these days, countries across the world are vying forthe title of the “biggest and the best” creations. However, in thequest for the top spot, two major challenges have been uncovered…thecost of the equipment to harness the solar power and the land massneeded to build these solar-powered giants.
Regardless of thedrawbacks, massive solar-powered creations are being designed and builtacross the world. Let’s take a look at some of the largest – and mostimpressive – being constructed.
1. World’s largestsolar-powered boat: This magnificent example of solar-poweredinnovation called PlanetSolar is touted as the world’s largestsolar-powered trimaran. The multi-hull vessel, which will rely on solar panels designed to produce 1,000 watts of electricity daily, is slatedto travel around the world in 140 days. Without sun, the vessel cancontinue its journey for up to three days.
2. World’slargest solar-powered audio system: The Taiwan National Stadium ishome to the world’s largest solar-powered audio system. The stadium –which can accommodate 40,000 visitors – has a huge roof thatincorporates almost 9,000 solar panels. The electricity generated bythe panels is used to power the audio system, comprised of about 70loudspeakers, designed to emulate the form of a flowing river.
3. World’s largest solarproject: Twenty blue-chip German companies have come together toform the Desertec Foundation, builders of the world’s largest solarpower plant, which is being constructed throughout countries of northern Africa deemed to be politically stable. Using the dryness of theSahara Desert, the combined output of the plant will be 80 times largerthan a similar installation being designed for the Mojave Desert. Thewhopping 100GW of solar power will be transmitted across theMediterranean Sea to Europe, ultimately supplying about 15% of thecountry’s energy demands.
4.World’s largest solar-powered office building: One of the mostimpressive solar-powered creations can be found in the ShangdongProvince in northwest China. Built to resemble the structure of asundial, this solar-powered office building will hold researchfacilities, meeting areas, exhibition halls and a sustainable hotel.Chinese symbols for the sun and the moon have been incorporatedthroughout its design, along with other green alternatives. The venueis slated to be the site of the 4th World Solar City Congress.
5.World’s largest solar stadium: This Japan-based record-breakingstadium, which can hold 55,000 visitors, can also power about 80% of the surrounding neighborhood when the stadium is not in use. Nearly 9,000solar panels – that generate 1.14GWh of electricity each year – coverevery inch of the massive stadium roof. No one has ever attempted afeat of this magnitude, which is to be the main site for the WorldGames.
6.World’s largest Solar Power Tower Plant: Spain is home to theworld’s largest solar-power tower plant which stands 54-stories (531ft.) high. Heliostats will track the sun during the day and forward the radiation onto a receiver positioned on the top of the tower togenerate enough electricity for 10,000 homes.
7. World’slargest solar-powered footbridge: The Kurilpa Bridge located inBrisbane is the world’s largest footbridge, welcoming 36,500 people each week. The LED lighting program – powered by 84 solar panels – produces a variety of lighting effects and is to become a main feature ofBrisbane’s annual Riverfire celebrations. Construction costs for thefootbridge topped $63 million.
8.World’s largest solar powered tree: Brisbane is also home to theworld’s largest solar-powered Christmas tree, which delights crowds with its 16,000 bulbs and baubles. Visitors are delighted with themulti-colored twinkling lights and giant star make completely of solarpanels.
9.World’s largest solar cooking system: This system is located in the state of Maharashtra, India and was built at a cost of $280,000 (43%was paid by the government) to convert water into 3,500 kg. of steam.This steam is used to cook food for a reported 20,000 people, who arevisiting the shrine of Sai Baba, a 19th century saint.