Solar pumping for irrigators: Tips, tricks and traps

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Mobile solar
Figure 7: 1.5kW Mobile Solar Pumping Array on a Trailer (Sustainable Technologies, 2014)
NSW Farmers

Solar pumping has huge potential to reduce diesel costs for irrigators and to increase farm productivity.

To help irrigators better understand the steps to take when installing solar pumps, Landcare, Local Land Services and the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) are holding three practical interactive teleconferences in mid-August.

At each hour-long teleconference, you’ll hear from pumping efficiency expert Jim Purcell and from Andrew Gill, a Narromine irrigator who’s worked through the hurdles to successfully implement a 100kW solar diesel hybrid pump on his property, subsequently hosting a field day that attracted more than 110 people, speaking on ABC Radio’s The Country Hour and PM, and drawing extensive media attention. 

During the first half-hour, Purcell and Gill will talk about:

• pump efficiency;

• making the business case for solar; and

• how to find a supplier you can trust.

In the remaining half-hour, they’ll address questions sent in by listeners via phone, text or email.

All three teleconferences will be hosted by Bruce Reynolds, former ABC rural reporter.

All you need to join in the conversation is a telephone. You can phone in from home or from a mobile phone anywhere in Australia.

The teleconferences will take place from 8am–9am on:

• Friday 12 August;

• Monday 15 August; and

• Monday 22 August.

Phone-in time is 8am.

Phone 1800 238 182 (free from landlines; for mobile phones, check charges with your service provider) at 8am EST, then follow the prompts to join the teleconference. The PIN you’ll need is 19344.

Registration and enquiries

Registration is essential and closes three days before each event. RSVP to Karin Stark at NSW Local Land Services on 02 6841 6510 or via email at

As numbers for each teleconference are limited, we recommend that you register early.

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