Home

Newsletters

NEWSLETTER ARCHIVE
SUBSCRIBE
UNSUBSCRIBE
FORWARD TO A FRIEND
Contact us
Projects
Forums & Seminars
Company Profiles

Forthcoming Events


Job Opportunities in Africa
Media Partners
About Us

 
 














CATEGORY. COMPANY / TECHNOLOGY FOCUSRETURN TO NEWSLETTER INDEX PAGE
VIEW ALL ARTICLES
spacer

RenEnergy: Solar PV and Lithium Ion Phosphate Energy Storage built for Africa


PROMOTIONAL FEATURE | 3 SEPTEMBER 2015

Africa is the most impoverished continent when it comes to the avialibility of electricity. With limited electricity grid networks and the lack of maintenance on it most businesses revert to diesel generators and households to fossil fuel. The astonishing reality is that by 2030, about 360 000 people will die every year from breathing smoke from biomass fires in sub-Saharan households. (Prasad, 2012). To put the above situation into perspective, more people are set to die prematurely from smoke inhalation than from malaria, tuberculosis and Aids combined.

The problem unfortunately is not only ringfenced to households but business, including agriculture, can be paralised through the lack or no energy supply. It is common knowledge that Africa has extremely good climate and soil conditions to be used to feed the ever increasing population. Without reliable electricity this is however not possible.

RenEnergy – Solar PV and Africa

RenEnergy was established in the United Kingdom in 2006. In 2012 it was decided that an African office will be opened with its head office in Cape Town. The mission statement was clear from the outset – Clean and safe energy is one of Africa's greatest natural resources through the massive amounts of irradiation avialable to the continent. It is just a question of harvesting this energy through the different solar technologies available.

Africa map

Solar Photovoltaic (Solar PV) technology has not only increased in its effeciency but has also come down in costs over recent years. One of the main advantages of Solar PV is that after implementation the system is a passive generator of electricity with very low maintenance. Solar can now also be incorporated with diesel generators which will bring cost of generation down tremendously.

The key is always to find the right partner in completing a optimum quality solution that will seamlessly generate electricity between 35 and 40 years. RenEnergy prides itself that any optimum design and quality of installation is on par with European quality whether it is implemeted in London or Lusaka.

The biggest disadvantage of Solar PV has always been the fact that it can only generate electricity during daylight hours. The storage of energy for night time usage has not only been expensive but old style lead acid technology has never been designed for daily quick cycling and the hot weather conditions of Africa. Lead acid technologies discharge and charge cycle is always based on 10 hours. As soon as this cycle is faster, the amount of available energy becomes significantly less (Peukert law 1897). The second disqualification is temperature. As soon as the temperature rises above 26 degrees celcius the properties of the battery becomes a lot more insuffecient. All of this leads to a much shortened life cycle with batteries being replaced constantly.

RenEnergy – LiFePO4 Energy Storage for Africa

RenEnergy has consistently been searching for technology that will be suitable for Africa. With the rise of electric cars, which must be driven by technology that allows constant and quick cycling of energy in harsher temperatures, the answer was found. Lithium Ion Phosphate (LiFePO4) energy storage has all the properties that will allow energy be stored with a long and reliable life span. Dry cell technology with no fumes that can safely be incorporated either in existing business or household infrastructures. With energy shortage a reality this can now be harvested during the day through Solar PV and utilised 24 hours with LiFePO4 energy storage. The storage is engineered and assembled in Africa with only the cells being imported.

RenEnergy LiFePO4

The key advantages are:

  1. Optimum management of the energy through Battery Managent System.
  2. Ability for remote maintenance on the energy storage systems through 2G link.
  3. Cycle Life – LiFePO4 cells can be cycled, 2000 to 3000 cycles at 70-80% DOD. These tests were done under 0.5CV. This means that the battery is discharged within 2 hours. Where batteries are used for smaller loads like 10-20%, even more cycles are possible.
  4. Depth of Discharge – One of the key parameters of any Battery installation is DOD. This property will determine the capacity to be installed. If one needs 100Ah capacity, you will have to install 200Ah, if you can only discharge to 50% DOD. Technically, double the cost of the installation.
  5. Charging Time – LiFePO4 can be fully charged in a very short time. Charging time under normal conditions is 3 hours, but 1 hour, or even 30 minutes are possible.
  6. Efficiency – If a 100Ah battery is discharged at 1C or 100A (100% Capacity) of the cell, it will still deliver about 98% of the capacity, and it does not suffer from Peukert's law.
  7. Temperature stability – The working temperature range for LiFePO4 is from -20°C to +60°C (Extremely cold or hot weather will not affect its performance). Charging however, needs to be done at a temperature higher than 0°C, but it can discharge at -20°C.
  8. Energy density – High energy density reduces the weight and size of the cells.
  9. Safety – LiFePO4 has an extremely stable chemical composition and is safe to use. The cells are intrinsically safe. It will not explode or catch fire under collision when over charged or short circuited. The cells have a high thermal stability of up to 500C. (5000% of capacity, a virtual short circuit)
  10. Safety – LiFePO4 has an extremely stable chemical composition and is safe to use. The cells are intrinsically safe. It will not explode or catch fire under collision when over charged or short circuited. The cells have a high thermal stability of up to 500C. (5000% of capacity, a virtual short circuit)
  11. Total cost of ownership – When all these factors are taken into account in a financial simulation, it will be evident that the TCO over a 10 or 20 year period is better than any other battery technology in most applications. It is becoming clear as to why LiFePO4 batteries are busy gaining ground on a massive scale in Europe.

RenEnergy – Applications for Solar PV and LiFePO4 Energy Storage

GRID INTERACTIVE
Grid Interactive

An installed Solar Photovoltaic system including customised energy storage. Solar PV system is designed to replace maximum daytime energy requirements. Storage design is done to replace total energy requirement, or critical loads required (certain equipment) during power outages and for a period of time required.

System Advantages

  • Solar PV System is able to stay live and generate power for you to consume during power outages – planned or unplanned.
  • Security of supply – no lost productivity.
  • Immediate savings, 25 year plus generation.
  • Diversify energy source and aid risk mitigation of increasingly unreliable utility grid supply.
  • No inflation with own generation – fix your variable cost for 25 years +.
  • Great investment and return on investment.

SOLAR DIESEL HYBRID
Solar Diesel Hybrid

An installed Solar Photovoltaic system which includes generator. Solar PV system is tied to generator during times of utility outages.

System Advantages

  • Solar PV system is able to stay live and generate power for you to consume during power outages – planned or unplanned.
  • Security of supply – no lost productivity.
  • Immediate diesel saving as portion of load is generated by Solar PV system.
  • Decrease dependency on diesel.
  • Immediate saving, 25 year plus generation.
  • Diversify energy source and aid risk mitigation of increasingly unreliable utility grid supply.
  • No inflation with own generation – fix your variable costs for 25 years +.
  • Great investment and return on investment

ENERGY STORAGE / BATTERIES
Energy Storage / Batteries

State of the art energy storage technology for load shedding, planned or unplanned utility outages.

System Advantages

  • Your operations are able to stay live during power outages.
  • Long life-time of premium storage technologies used (10 to 20 years depending on frequency of use).
  • Security of supply – no lost productivity.
  • Decrease dependency on diesel.
  • Diversify energy source and risk mitigation of increasingly unreliable utility grid supply.

Conclusion

RenEnergy has the capacity with African and European engineers available to implement professionally engineered solutions anywhere in Africa. For further assistance do not hesitate to contact us.

RenEnergy – Partner in Power

PHONE.  +27 (0)21 851 6085
MAIL. info@renenergy.co.za
WEBSITE.  www.renenergy.co.za

SIGN UP FOR
OUR NEWSLETTER
VIEWED.  3269 
 
spacer

Tags


ren energy, solar pv, lithium ion phosphate storage, diesel generators

 
THIS ARTICLE WAS FIRST PUBLISHED BY
AGRI4AFRICA

 
                                             
© 2012-2017 AGRI4AFRICA
TIGME.COM | GOVISIT.NET
Newsletter signup buttonP.O. Box 410
Kleinmond 7195
Western Cape
South Africa
Phone. +27 28 272 9071
Contact us by Email
Right column footer