The new edition of our “Top 5 Hybrid Energy News” is mainly about projects in rural electrification. It covers projects in Australia, Gabon, Alaska, Great Britain, and Ethiopia. It features Aggreko, Younicos, ENGIE, Ausar Energy, SAFT, Moixa Energy, Hitachi, and General Electric.
Aggreko and Younicos to power Gold Fields mine in Australia with a solar-gas-battery hybrid solution
In Western Australia, solar is combined with gas. Aggreko won the contract to build and operate the 21MW power station in 2016, and has since worked with Gold Fields on plans to provide 7.3MW of solar power generation, as well as a 2MW/1MWh battery system, to be integrated with the existing gas supply as a hybrid power station. The system will be provided under a ‘microgrid-as-a-service’ business model.
Karim Wazni, Managing Director – Aggreko Microgrids and Storage Solutions, adds: “We are delighted to be working with Gold Fields on their Granny Smith power supply. The combination of solar, battery and gas that we can offer in our portfolio is probably the most competitive, reliable and cleanest way to supply power to remote locations in Australia.”
Hybrid systems with a combined capacity of 2.2 MWp to be built in Gabon
French utility ENGIE’s regional subsidiary, Ausar Energy, will deploy eight hybrid solar systems in Gabon after an agreement was signed with CDC, the Gabonese financial institution Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations. The solar systems have a combined capacity of 2.2 MWp.
“With construction set to begin in a few weeks, this project will contribute to the Gabonese Republic’s proactive policy of using renewable energy – solar and hydropower – to increase the country’s energy capacities. The solar energy will be used in eight locations that are currently supplied by oil-fired thermal power stations, and will save 2,600 tons of CO2 per year and reduce generation costs by 30%,” comments Raphael Tilot, the Chief Customer Solutions Officer of ENGIE’s Africa Business Unit.
950 kWh energy storage for Alaskan microgrid with 2.9 MW wind capacity
The Alaskan city of Kotzebue has integrated a SAFT lithium-ion (Li-ion) energy storage system (ESS) into its off-grid microgrid. The ESS enables the hybrid wind-diesel power system to achieve its full potential, providing cleaner, more reliable and less expensive power to a remote community of 3,700 people.
“The logistical challenges of transporting diesel fuel to small communities in the far north of Canada and Alaska result in very high costs for electricity, which can be mitigated by the addition of wind generation. Combining energy storage as part of these deployments allows curtailments to be minimized and fuel savings to be maximized, particularly when diesel-off operation is enabled”, explains Jim McDowall, Business Development Manager at SAFT.
$14m storage and renewables model to be tested on UK islands
British battery company Moixa is installing smart batteries on Scilly as part of the £10.8m ($14m) Smart Energy Islands project, which is being led by Hitachi Europe. Scilly is an archipelago off the Cornish coast in southwest England. The project is part financed by £8.6 million from the European Regional Development Fund, will lay the foundations for the wider Smart Islands program, which aims to cut electricity bills by 40 per cent by 2025.
Simon Daniel, CEO at Moixa Energy Holdings Ltd, points out: “The Isles of Scilly serves as a global test-bed for solar and batteries in an isolated environment, showing how they can save money for households, enable more clean renewable power, and support efficient, cost-effective energy systems, reducing the reliance on the grid. It helps inform how the UK can deliver as a Smart Energy island, and leverage batteries for flexibility as solar, wind and EV adoption grows, and showcases the value of such technologies for communities and for international markets.”
GE commissions hybrid distributed power unit for Digo village
General Electric (GE) has commissioned a scalable microgrid system powered by solar-diesel plus battery storage unit for Digo Village in the Oromia region of Ethiopia. The system which was implemented in partnership with Ethiopia’s Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Electricity, the Oromia Region Energy bureau as well as Ethiopian Electric Utility (EEU) will provide power to 1,500 inhabitants of Digo. The offtakers are a health clinic, school, administrative offices, and homes.
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Dr. Thomas Hillig is founder of THEnergy. THEnergy assists companies in dealing with energy-related challenges. Renewable energy companies are offered strategy, marketing and sales consulting services. For industrial companies, THEnergy develops energy concepts and shows how they can become more sustainable. It combines experience from conventional and renewable energy with industry knowledge in consulting. In addition to business consulting, THEnergy advises investors regarding renewable energy investments in changing markets. It is also active in marketing intelligence and as an information provider in select fields, such as renewables and mining, through the platform th-energy.net/mining or renewables on islands through the new platform th-energy.net/islands.