Solar+storage in the Russian Arctic


Hevel Energo Servis, a unit of Russian PV module maker and project developer Hevel Solar, has finalized the construction of an off-grid solar+storage project in Chukotka, the easternmost federal region of Russia, in the Arctic.

The facility will supply power to 700 households in two remote villages.

“The off-grid power station will help municipality reduce diesel consumption by 30%,” the head of corporate communications for Hevel Solar, Anton Usachev, told pv magazine. “The fuel savings are expected to reach 2130 tons during a 10-year energy service contract.”

The $2.7 million solar+storage unit includes a 550 kW PV array and a 470 kWh lithium-ion battery.

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The plant's 1.500 monocrystalline modules each offer 375 W of power.

Image: Hevel Solar

The project was built under Russia's energy service scheme, which enables independent power producers to sell power to municipalities that own and operate diesel power plants via a competitive bidding scheme. Upon completion and commissioning of the facility, the municipality remunerates the selected bidder on a monthly basis, with the revenue derived mainly from diesel economy volumes and generated power.

The levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) of the project was estimated by Usachev at between RUB 13 ($0.18) and RUB 19/kWh, “which can be explained by complicated logistics,” he said.

Hevel Solar is also building off-grid solar plants in the Russian Far East, the country’s easternmost region, where access to electricity and transmission networks is limited. The region, which is the largest and least populated district of Russia, has the poorest energy and transport infrastructure in the country. The company has also built off-grid PV installations totaling 2.8 MW in the Siberian regions of Altay, Tyva and Zabaikalsky.

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