From pv magazine France
Madagascar-based renewable energy company Filatex commissioned, last week, 44 Solar GEM mobile and portable solar units in the port city of Tulear, in Madagascar.
Solar GEM is a plug-and-play, containerized solution developed by the French company Akuo, which is now launching the industrialization phase of its hybrid solutions. Each of the containers contains 200 photovoltaic panels which are already pre-assembled and pre-wired.
Offering a total capacity of 74 kWp, each unit be deployed in 30 minutes and can be folded up in 45 minutes. These units have the advantage of being able to be moved, between two periods of difficult climatic conditions, thus offering protection solutions in areas where environmental conditions are unstable.
In an off-grid installation, Solar GEM makes it possible to control the PV array and to interface with any generator-set controller. The Malagasy project, which was also implemented by the energy division of the Filatex group – Enelec – required a total investment of €6 million. It has been supported with long-term funding by non-profit organization Atmosfair, which aims to help develop renewable energy around the world.
In Madagascar only 15% of the population has access to electricity, which the World Bank says is one of the lowest rates in the world. The rapid deployment of these mobile units aims to help the government to achieve its goal of expanding access to energy to 70% of the population by 2030. “Our pilot project will add 2.9 MW of energy to the national energy grid and, hopefully, we plan to deploy other units of this type in the coming months,” said Hasnaine Yavarhoussen, CEO of the Filatex Group.
By the end of 2020, Enelec will complete the construction of solar power plants at four sites in Madagascar, for a total of 50 MW. By 2022, the company is expected to install an additional 280 MW of renewable energy projects: 170 MW in Madagascar and 110 MW in Africa and Europe, including Guinea, Ghana, Ivory Coast and Albania. The company intends to triple its production of renewable energy by 2022 and become a fully renewable energy producer within the next decade.
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