Solar Power Generation

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GeoSolar solar energy generation solutions

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GeoSolar is recognised as an International Industry leader for having a well organised approach to the various aspects of developing large wind turbine and solar installations. GeoSolar applies the best standards and procedures covering all aspects to be included in the project development.

Our project activities fall into our 6 phase approach to the development of Solar Farms 

GeoSolar has 24 solar power generation projects spread accross the Northern, Western and East Cape of South Africa: Summary of Projects

Why Solar Power?

Horizontal irradiation map - AfricaImagine a crop that can be harvested daily on the most barren desert and arid land, with no fertilizer or tillage, and that produces no harmful emissions. Imagine an energy source so bountiful that it can provide many times more energy than we could ever expect to need or use. Imagine that an hour's worth of sunlight bathing the planet holds far more energy than humans worldwide could consume in a year. You don't have to imagine it -- it's real and it's here. Solar energy is an abundant enormous resource that is readily available to all countries throughout the world, and all the space above the earth. It is clean, no waste comes from it, and once a system is in place, it's "free."

This “free” source of electricity can be used to supply the energy needs of homes, farms and businesses. Through the use of photovoltaic (PV), concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) or concentrated solar power (CSP), sunlight is converted into electricity that can provide power to businesses, homes and drive motors. 

We believe that to meet all its energy needs, Eritrea should diversify its energy mix by accelerating the use of all forms of renewable energy technologies (including PV, thermal solar, wind power, biogas and hydro) and more proactively promote energy efficiency.

What is Solar Farming?

Solar FarmOn a solar farm, large amounts of power are generated from sunlight. Sincesolar energy is collected from a wide area, it is important to view the process as “farming” to “harvest” renewable energy from the sun. Solar farming is an opportunity for those in the agricultural sector to view solar energy as a “replacement harvest” and create cleaner forms of energy by transforming vacant or even underused land into farms that produce electrical energy.

Solar energy farms can be interconnected into the electricity grid and produce significant levels of electricity offsetting traditional sources of generation. Moreover, large-scale solar-power generation has the potential to help meet Eritrea’s energy needs.

Solar energy provides a new kind of experience to farmers in growing their crops. New commercial solar technologies enable farmers to capture solar energy to produce electricity, heat and hot water to enrich their farms, and energy independence to farmers.

How to Implement Solar Farming

Some governments are providing huge grants or subsidies to fund community solar farm projects as part of their energy programs. Solar farming can help advance Eritrea’s use of renewable energy and help assure achievement of economic development goals. To successfully implement solar farming requires feed-in tariffs. This allows farmers to invest with the security of 20 to 25 year government grants. The energy from these farms is purchased directly by utilities, which often sign 10 to 20-year energy purchase contracts with solar farm owners, thereby securing low-cost energy for the end user. 

Solar farms will also play a vital role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global warming. By installing solar farm equipment, owners will also considerably boost the value of their property.

The Future of Solar Farming in Modern India

Eritrea is blessed with a vast solar energy potential. Everyday most parts of the country receive 7.5 - 8 kWh of solar energy per square meter. Eritrea’s deserts and farmland are amongst the sunniest in the world, and thus suitable for large-scale power production. The Eritrean government should embrace favourable tax structures and consider providing financial resources to fund projects to put up community solar farms as part of their energy development programs.

A decline in solar panel prices over the last two years also has contributed to exponential increases in solar deployment worldwide and lower project costs. A new technology that also holds promise is CPV. CPV uses a concentrating optical system that focuses a large area of sunlight onto the individual photovoltaic cells. This feature makes CPV panels two to three times more efficient (approximately 40 percent) at converting sunlight to electricity as compared to silicon-based PV (15 to 20 percent) and thin films (9 to 13 percent). 

Major cost reductions will be realized through mass manufacturing. The steep increase in system efficiency, combined with decreases in manufacturing costs could levelize the cost of energy for CPV at around $0.10/kWh by 2015. Cost reductions are so dramatic that Bloomberg recently reported solar energy could soon rival coal. The cost has become so competitive during peak times in Japan and California that the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot goal of $1 per watt for large projects by 2017 may happen a lot sooner.

In our opinion, all new energy production in Eritrea could be from renewable sources by 2030 and all existing generation could be converted to renewable energy by 2050, if deployment is backed by the right public policies.

Where We’re Going

Solar energy represents a bright spot on Eritrea’s economic front. If Eritrea makes a massive switch from oil power plants to solar and other renewable sources, it is possible that 100 percent of Eritrea’s electricity could be from renewable energy by 2050. Solar energy would require the creation of a vast region of photovoltaic cells in the North West and Central parts of the country that could operate during the day. Excess daytime energy can be stored in various forms such as molten or liquid salt (a mixture of sodium nitrate and potassium nitrate), compressed air, pumped hydro, hydrogen, battery storage, etc., which would be used as an energy source during night-time hours.

Solar energy will be competitive with coal as improved and efficient solar cells, CPV and CSP enter the market. WE predict that solar farming advancements and growth would empower Eritrea’s rural economies and companies will move their operations from urban areas to rural areas due to cheaper land and labour within the solar belt.

Solar farming is a renewable source of energy and the greenest form of commercial energy.  Solar energy has become the leading alternative to the costly and eco disasters associated with fossil fuels. We urge the government of Eritrea to accelerate the country's solar energy expansion plans and policies by implementing government subsidies for residential solar power through renewable energy rebates and feed-in tariffs. Solar farming is a great concept for an efficient use of barren land and the ideal way to develop large utility scale solar energy farms to meet Eritrea’s economic development goals.

Solar energy is a game-changing prospect for Eritrea. The nation must accelerate and encourage the domestic development of renewable energy now. It is a question of whether we have the societal and political will to achieve this goal to eliminate our wasteful spending and dependence on foreign sources of energy. The Eritrean government should provide favourable government policies to ease the permitting process and to provide start-up capital to promote the growth of solar energy. State and central governments should provide initiatives and other support in order to increase solar power plant capacity. Solar energy is a win-win situation for Eritrea and the environment, and has the potential to power Eritrea’s economy, create millions of new jobs and change the face of Eritrea as a green nation