Acciona & Sener Report Progress On 100 MW CSP Project In South Africa

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Work on a concentrated solar power project allocated to GDF Suez is progressing well, according to news from the developers.

Sener and Acciona formed a consortium to develop the 100 MW Kathu solar thermal power plant in South Africa, situated in the Northern Cape Province, 600 km south-west of Pretoria.

The project will be developed on a turnkey basis with both companies jointly providing engineering, construction, and commissioning of the entire facility. This solar thermal power plant is owned by a group of companies led by GDF Suez.

The Kathu Solar Park project will employ Sener patented parabolic trough reflectors and a molten salt storage system with 4.5 hours thermal storage capacity. The plant is expected to be operational by 2018 and will supply electricity to 80,000 homes.

The project was allotted to GDF Suez and its partners during the third round of South Africa’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producers Programme (REIPPP) auctions, with an investment of more than €500 million.

This project will be located near KaXu Solar One, which was the first solar thermal power project in South Africa. Both these companies have considerable experience in the development of solar thermal power projects. For both Sener and Acciona, this will be their second solar thermal project to be developed in South Africa. They worked together earlier on the Bokpoort plant (Upington), which is also a turnkey project employing Sener trough and a molten salt storage system. Bokpoort plant is expected to be commissioned by end of this year.

Through the first three rounds of auctions under the REIPPPP, 7 CSP projects with a cumulative capacity of 600 MW have been allocated with one of these projects already commissioned.

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Mridul Chadha

Mridul currently works as Head-News & Data at Climate Connect Limited, a market research and analytics firm in the renewable energy and carbon markets domain. He earned his Master’s in Technology degree from The Energy & Resources Institute in Renewable Energy Engineering and Management. He also has a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Engineering. Mridul has a keen interest in renewable energy sector in India and emerging carbon markets like China and Australia.

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