The Ketura plant was connected to Israel’s grid in July 2015. Later that year, Ecoppia signed a deal with the plant’s joint operators, Arawa Power and EDF Energy. The company states that its waterless cleaning robots are the only technology that can restore an entire pv plant within hours, without any need for external electricity consumption.
Keeping panels free of dust and dirt that can reduce efficiency is a key issue, particularly in harsh desert conditions. The Ketura power plant’s location, in the southern stretch of the Arava desert, sees frequent sand storms, very little rain, and is affected by dust from nearby agricultural sites.
In this type of environment, traditional cleaning methods are too labor and intensive to be cost effective. Also, fast recovery from all types of soiling is critical to the plant’s maintaining of its LCOE.
“We’re pleased to the bring the experience gained over four years of cleaning in multiple sites in the middle-east to this important region,” said Eran Meller, CEO of Ecoppia. “Cleaning 80 million solar panels in the harshest desert conditions globally, we expect to continue to play a leading role in this growing market.
As solar capacity continues to grow in desert regions, innovative module cleaning solutions are becoming more and more important to the industry. Last year, Ecoppia announced a major expansion, including the opening of a new factory, into India, where the environmental conditions at many solar sites also mean that cleaning technology is in high demand.