Harness the power of the sun for sustainable and profitable Bitcoin mining. Learn how solar-powered mining maximizes earnings and reduces environmental impact.
A significant amount of electricity is used in the world’s largest energy-intensive process, bitcoin mining. Concerns about the environment’s impact and carbon footprint have been raised due to this high energy consumption. The heavy reliance on fossil fuels in traditional mining operations contributes to greenhouse gas emissions and climate change.
The idea of solar-powered Bitcoin mining has drawn a lot of attention as awareness of sustainability and renewable energy has grown. Miners can increase profitability through cost savings by utilizing the power of the sun in addition to lowering their carbon footprint. In this blog post, we will delve into the world of solar-powered Bitcoin mining and examine its advantages, difficulties, and best practices for maximizing both sustainability and profitability.
Depending on your location and the electricity consumption of your mining rig, between 30 and 50 solar panels may be required to mine Bitcoin. A typical pro rig uses 3000 watts, or 72 kWh, per day.
This article aims to explain how Bitcoin mining using solar energy operates and how you can use solar energy to offset your emissions and save a ton of money.
Table of Contents
Understanding Solar Power for Bitcoin Mining
It is without a doubt expensive to mine bitcoins. You might be wondering why that is.
It does use a lot of electricity, though, and electricity is expensive.
For instance, 1 kWh of electricity costs $13.9 cents on average in the United States.
While it may not seem like much at first, $13.9 cents can add up depending on how many kWh you actually use. I can tell you right now that no Bitcoin mining rig on the planet could function with such little electricity.
Photovoltaic (PV) solar cells convert sunlight into electricity, which is how solar power is harnessed. Sunlight availability, panel efficiency, and system sizing are some of the variables that affect how well solar energy works for mining Bitcoin. Solar power has many advantages for mining operations located in areas with abundant sunlight, but careful analysis and planning are required to ensure optimal performance.
Benefits of Solar-Powered Bitcoin Mining
- Environmental Benefits: By using solar energy, miners greatly reduce their carbon footprint and help create a cleaner, greener mining ecosystem. By eliminating the need for fossil fuels, solar power reduces the environmental damage caused by conventional energy sources.
- Savings: By relying on solar energy, which is both free and renewable, solar-powered mining enables miners to reduce their electricity costs. Solar power offers a chance to achieve significant cost savings and boost profitability because electricity costs make up a sizeable portion of mining operational costs.
- Grid independence: By reducing their reliance on the grid, solar-powered mining operations increase their independence and robustness. In areas where there are frequent power outages or where electricity prices are unstable, this independence offers stability.
How Much Electricity Does Bitcoin Mining Use?
Your mining rig will determine everything in this. To show you the various wattage ratings of different mining rigs, we have created a table below.
|Bitcoin Mining Rig||Wattage Draw|
|Antminer S19 Pro||3250|
|Antminer S19 XP Hydro||5304|
|Antminer S19 Pro+ Hydro||5445|
|Antminer S19 Pro Hydro||5221|
|Antminer S19 Hydro||5451|
|Antminer S19 XP||3010|
|Antminer S19j Pro||3068|
Most crypto miners leave their equipment running continuously. Let’s calculate the number of kWh of electricity the Antminer S19 would consume during a hypothetical day of mining while keeping this fact in mind.
Based on an appliance’s wattage, it is simple to determine how much electricity it consumes (Wh/kWh).
Simply multiply the appliance’s wattage rating—in this case, 3000 watts—by the number of hours you anticipate using it.
We intend to leave our machine to mine continuously in order to achieve an ROI as quickly as possible.
3000 watts x 24 hours = 72,000 Wh or 72 kWh.
Let’s look at the daily average for electricity use in the United States to help you better understand how much electricity that is. household. That is roughly 28 kWh.
An Antminer S19 would require 2.5 times as much electricity to mine Bitcoin for 24 hours than a typical household would use in a day!
With your solar-powered Bitcoin mining setup, you’d have to offset an incredible amount of electricity.
The number of solar panels required to mine Bitcoin continuously will be covered in the following section of the article.
How Many Solar Panels Are Needed for Bitcoin Mining?
Solar energy can be used to mine Bitcoin, but it is not cheap.
Depending on where in the world you are based and how much electricity your Bitcoin mining setup uses, you will need a certain number of solar panels.
The top mining rigs’ wattage draws have already been determined; the next step is to determine how much sunlight (peak sun hours) your area receives so that we can determine how many solar panels you’ll need.
There are two ways to determine when the sun is at its strongest in your region.
- For information on South Africa, Australia, South Africa, and the United Kingdom, use our resource page.
- If your nation is not yet included in our resources, use the Global Solar Atlas to calculate it for yourself.
Use the map marked Global Horizontal Irradiation (GHI) if using the Global Solar Atlas.
Decide how many peak sun hours your region receives right now, and record that information somewhere on a piece of paper.
Basically, we advise against looking into solar-powered Bitcoin mining rigs if you reside in a region or city that is known for being somewhat cloudy (no one is pointing any fingers at England here).
More on that later.
You Can Use This Formula to Figure Out How Many Solar Panels You Will Need for a Bitcoin Mining Rig.
Give you an example, shall we?
Let’s imagine you reside in California, in the United States.
The average number of peak sun hours in California per day is 5.2. Simply multiply your results by 30 (the number of days in a month), as we need the monthly peak sun hours for this calculation, not the daily peak sun hours.
5.2 x 3 days = 156 peak sun hours in California.
Let’s now divide your monthly energy usage by your monthly peak sun hours.
We are aware that an Antminer S19 consumes 3000 watts, which translates to 72,000 Wh (72 kWh) per day if used for 24 hours. We multiply it again by 31 days to obtain the monthly usage.
72 x 30 = 2,160 kWh per month.
Apply the formula above now.
2,160 ÷ 156 = 13,84
13,84 x 1000 = 13,846 watts.
The number of solar panels you will require must now be determined. To accomplish this, divide the aforementioned figure by the proposed solar panel rating.
We advise using a power rating of 400 watts for your Bitcoin mining setup since most residential solar systems install solar panels with this capacity.
13,846 ÷ 400 = 34,6 panels (round that off to 35).
You must put 35 solar panels on your roof, each of which can generate about 13,846 watts of power, in order to compensate for the energy used in Bitcoin mining.
To mine Bitcoin using solar power, you will therefore require a 14kW solar system.
13,846 watts divided by 1,000 = 13,84kW
Round off to 14kW
This example once more assumes that you reside in California.
Let’s try another example, this time assuming you reside in London, England.
2.8 x 30 days = 84 peak sun hours.
2,160 ÷ 84 = 25,71
25,71 x 1000 = 25,710 watts
25,710 ÷ 400 = 64,27 solar panels needed.
As you can probably tell, this choice is simply unworkable. The lack of sunlight makes it impossible to use solar power for Bitcoin mining in London unless you have a lot of land and aren’t too concerned about the high cost of solar panels.
How Much Will a Solar-Powered Bitcoin Mining Rig Cost Me?
The price of the Bitcoin mining equipment itself varies a lot. The price range for a rig could be between $1,000 and $10,000.
The size of the system you install and your location on the planet also affect how much a solar panel will cost.
In the U.S. for example these are the average costs you can expect for solar panels:
Average Costs for Solar Panels in the U.S.
|SYSTEM SIZE||AVERAGE SOLAR PANEL SYSTEM COST (BEFORE TAX CREDITS)||AVERAGE SOLAR PANEL SYSTEM COST (AFTER TAX CREDITS)|
Cost of Bitmain Antminer S19 Series
The Expected Cost of a Solar-Powered Bitcoin Mining Setup
The price largely depends on the type of mining rigs you have, the number you intend to use, and the number of peak sun hours your area receives.
If you used the Antminer S19 Pro and lived in California, you would require a 15kW solar power system to produce enough electricity to balance out the electricity used by your Bitcoin mining equipment.
A 15kW solar system costs, on average, $31,191 after tax incentives, as shown in the table above.
$31,191 + $3,500 = $34,691 for a solar-powered bitcoin mining rig.
Although it is obvious that the solar system is the most expensive option in this scenario, consider how much you would have to pay for electricity if the solar panels weren’t there.
You would spend about $290 a month on electricity alone if you used the Antminer S19. (Given the average cost of electricity in the United States, some states pay more than others.)
$0,13 x 2,232 = $290
How Long Would Solar-Powered Bitcoin Mining Take to Pay for Itself?
Again, assuming you use the Antminer S19 and reside in California, it would take 8,9 years for your solar panels to pay for themselves.
The savings from not using electricity are the only ones considered in this. Of course, this process could be accelerated even more with the money made from mining Bitcoin.
Large-Scale Solar-Powered Bitcoin Mining Operations
We bet that some of you are tempted to construct a solar-powered Bitcoin mining facility that is large enough to operate on a utility-scale.
This section is for you if you’re wondering whether or not this option is a good one. Let’s take a hypothetical large-scale mining operation through its entire process step by step. This will allow you to determine whether or not this option is a good fit for you.
Scenario One – (10 Mining Units)
|Bitcoin Miner||Antminer S19 Pro|
|Total monthly consumption:||23,400 kWh|
|Solar System Size:||150 kW|
|Rough Rig Cost:||$100,000|
|Rough Solar System Cost:||$258,000|
|Total Cost Estimate:||$358,000|
Scenario Two – (25 Mining Units)
|Bitcoin Miner||Antminer S19 Pro|
|Total monthly consumption:||58,500 kWh|
|Solar System Size:||375 kW|
|Rough Rig Cost:||$250,000|
|Rough Solar System Cost:||$645,000|
|Total Cost Estimate:||$895,000|
Scenario Three – (50 Mining Units)
|Bitcoin Miner||Antminer S19 Pro|
|Total monthly consumption:||117,000 kWh|
|Solar System Size:||750 kW|
|Rough Rig Cost:||$500,000|
|Rough Solar System Cost:||$1,290,000|
|Total Cost Estimate:||$1,790,000|
Scenario Four – (250 Mining Units)
|Bitcoin Miner||Antminer S19 Pro|
|Total monthly consumption:||585,000 kWh|
|Solar System Size:||3,750 kW|
|Rough Rig Cost:||$2,500,000|
|Rough Solar System Cost:||$3,525,000|
|Total Cost Estimate:||$6,025,000|
Please be aware that the aforementioned calculations only represent rough estimates and are based on the assumption that your electricity costs $0.12 per kWh. The costs associated with installation and maintenance are also not considered. Last but not least, this entire operation requires room, and that means land. The price of land was never taken into consideration because it is so subjective.
You’ll observe that the size of the Bitcoin mining operation affects how quickly your investment pays off.
This is mainly because as you get closer to utility-grade solar system sizes, the cost per watt starts to drop (substantially).
A profitable and sustainable alternative to conventional, energy-intensive mining operations is solar-powered bitcoin mining. Miners can significantly reduce their carbon footprint, cut operating costs, and help create a greener future by utilizing solar energy. Miners can maximize profitability while embracing sustainability by integrating energy-efficient mining hardware, using proper system design, and utilizing renewable energy sources. Solar power will be essential in defining a more sustainable and commercially viable approach to mining as the Bitcoin industry develops.
Is Solar Power Good for Mining?
Solar power makes crypto mining eco-friendly while reducing the overall cost of electricity. The quantity of solar power needed to mine bitcoins depends on a number of variables, including the size of the mining operation, the effectiveness of the mining equipment, and the amount of sunlight available in the area.
What is the Operation of a Solar Power Source?
The PV cells in a solar panel absorb the energy from the sun’s rays when it shines on the panel. By generating electrical charges that move in response to an internal electrical field within the cell, this energy generates electrical currents that allow electricity to flow.
Is Solar Crypto Mining Profitable?
The break-even time is currently anticipated to be around 10 years.