Byron Solar Train
Byron Solar Train

How the solar train can power 11 households a year

BYRON Bay's solar train has generated enough additional power to power almost 12 homes for a year during its time on the tracks.

The project was the realisation of a five-year dream held by the owners of the resort Elements of Byron and Byron Bay Railroad Company development director, Jeremy Holmes.

The 70-tonne train made its first emissions-free 6km round trip journey between Byron Bay station and North Beach in December 2017 and makes between 12 and 15 trips on one full charge.

A media spokeswoman said up until November 26 last year, the train had generated 58,210kWh over and above the power it needed to run the operation.

"To put this in perspective, the average three-person household in both the Byron and Ballina shires uses 13.6kWh per day, or 4,965kWh per year,” she said.

"It can be estimated the excess energy provided to the grid over and above what the train service has used is sufficient to power 11.72 homes for a year.”

The train also celebrated a milestone at the weekend and carried its 100,000th passenger.

Sam Gaffney (centre) from Woy Woy Bay was the 100,000th passenger on the Byron Solar Train today 12 January. Pictured here with Dave Goffrey (left) from Woy Woy Bay and Jake Burgess from Sydney.
Sam Gaffney (centre) from Woy Woy Bay was the 100,000th passenger on the Byron Solar Train today 12 January. Pictured here with Dave Goffrey (left) from Woy Woy Bay and Jake Burgess from Sydney.

The train has 6.5 kilowatts of solar power panels on its roof charging a big lithium battery.

On top of the train shed at North Beach there is also 30-kilowatt solar system, to top up the train every four or five trips.