Manildra Solar Farm

Client: RCR (for developer First Solar)
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Date: March - December 2017

Supporting the development of valuable renewable power generation from the Australian sun


Large-scale solar is a key component in enabling Australia’s energy transition to greater proportions of renewable energy.

The 55.9 MW Manildra Solar Farm occupies 120 hectares near Manildra, NSW. It generates enough electricity to power 14 000 average homes, without requiring water, and displaces the equivalent of 91 000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions each year.

The solar farm delivers economic and environmental benefits for regional NSW and diversifies NSW’s energy mix.


Entura was engaged by RCR as the detailed design engineer for the project. Entura was responsible for providing engineering and construction design documentation required to construct the solar farm such that it would perform to the desired standards, meet the principal’s energy yield requirements, and conform to regulatory requirements including the development application constraints and the connection agreement. 

The detailed design of the project, powered by more than 466 000 advanced thin-film PV modules, included layout of the solar array, civil works, design of the AC and DC collector system, secondary protection, power plant control, SCADA and connection to the existing substation including power system studies and subsequent R1 & R2 compliance testing.

Entura also produced the procurement specifications and participated in technical compliance and evaluation of bid submissions.

Services provided

  • power system studies and grid connection compliance testing
  • solar DC and balance of plant design
  • high voltage substation electrical engineering design, specification, auditing and support
  • secondary protection and control automation
  • AC/DC reticulation design
  • earthing design, inspections and audits
  • insulation coordination design and assessment
  • civil design


The fast-track ambitious construction schedule required the design team to work alongside the EPC contractor on many critical path activities, particularly associated with procurement of major equipment.

Optimising the design was critical to achieve a balance to meet the developer’s standards and the EPC contractor’s budget. Practical cost-saving design was incorporated through value engineering without compromising safety in design, regulator compliance or network service provider standards. The client recognised Entura’s quality of service provision, attention to detail, rapid response and turnaround on critical design elements, including critical path procurement of major equipment and contracts. 

The solar farm has been operating since April 2018.