Africa’s Largest Self-Sufficient Solar Microgrid Project Created in Equatorial Guinea

Africas Largest Self-Sufficient Solar Microgrid Project Created in Equatorial Guinea

The government of Equatorial Guinea has selected MAECI Solar, a division of Management and Economic Consulting, Inc., in collaboration with GE Power & Water  and Princeton Power Systems, Inc., to install a 5-megawatt (MW) solar microgrid system on Annobon Province, an island off Equatorial Guinea in west central Africa. The solar microgrid will feature 5-MW solar modules and system integration by MAECI, an energy management system and controls from Princeton Power Systems and energy storage from GE. The island-wide microgrid will provide reliable, predictable power, supply enough electricity to handle 100 percent of the islands current energy demand and be the largest self-sufficient solar project on the continent of Africa.

MAECI is fortunate to have witnessed firsthand the development of Equatorial Guinea over the past few years, said Chris Massaro, senior vice president, MAECI. We are extremely excited to bring this solar microgrid solution to Annobon Island as well as support President Obiang Nguemas vision to raise the quality of life for the people and bring economic diversification to Equatorial Guinea. This project brings both. The Annobon Electrification Project will be the platform for economic growth on the island by bringing a much needed power supply that will enable the development of multiple industries, add 700 to 1,000 direct and indirect jobs to Annobon Island and significantly raise the standard of living.

Annobon Province has a population of approximately 5,000 residents. Today, the residents have reliable electricity for up to five hours per day and spend an average of 15 to 20 per cent of their income on supplemental power. The solar microgrid in development will eliminate this expense entirely and provide reliable electricity 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The project is a part of Equatorial Guineas National Economic Development Plan Horizon 2020, which aims to make Equatorial Guinea an emerging economy and accelerate its development and democratization by 2020.

Were excited to be a part of this historic project for Annobon Province and Equatorial Guinea, said Jeff Wyatt, general manager of GEs solar and energy storage business. GEs energy storage technology will help enable reliable, predictable power for the residents of Annobon through balancing the real-time supply and demand of solar and withstanding extreme heat environments without the need for air conditioning. This is an ideal technology for microgrids like Annobon Island.

The Annobon microgrid is enabled by the Princeton Power Systems BIGI-250 energy management platform, the worlds first three-port industrial-scale solar energy management system, with UL listing and thousands of operating hours in commercial applications since 2012. Princeton Power Systems has extensive prior experience working with GEs energy storage team. GEs batteries, in addition to providing superior high temperature performance and improved safety, offer environmental responsibility with non-toxic and recyclable materials and worldwide support.

Today, over 1 billion people are without power. We are taking our experience in microgrids from Alcatraz Island, the U.S. Department of Defense and private sector customers to now apply it to improving quality of life for people in rural areas where grid power does not exist or is not reliable, said Ken McCauley, president and CEO, Princeton Power Systems. We look forward to future global projects across the world to provide power to these areas to have hospitals, lighting and other basic human needs.

Source: Business Wire

SMART GRID Bulletin May 2017


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