Clean Energy Gets a Boost in Nigeria with 70 MW Solar Plant

Engineering conglomerate, Siemens has reached an agreement with local firm, CT Cosmos to construct a 70MW alternating current (MWac) photovoltaic (solar) power plant in Panyam, Plateau State. The facility estimated at $170 million is set to be completed within the next two years.

The contract is poised to bolster Nigeria’s power production by supplying the power generated to the national grid in order to meet the country’s rapid development. By tapping into Nigeria’s 485.1million MWh/day of solar energy, this project will go a long way to addressing Nigeria’s growing energy demand.

Although the cost of generating solar power has reduced the number of existing power plants in Nigeria, the evolution of modern technology has made it possible with leading global corporations like Siemens. The Chief Executive of CT Cosmos, Mr. Phillip Chukwueke disclosed that his firm selected Siemens as technical partner for the construction of the Solar Power facility due to the company’s proven expertise in delivering high quality solutions, technical support and services.

Plateau State, particularly Jos, has one of the highest solar radiation indices in the country as per SolarGIS latest baseline data. It is therefore no coincidence that the construction of the solar facility will be taking place at a location with minimal cloud cover that provides a conducive environment for the viability of a solar project.

Africa has the best potential for solar energy developments, according to the DLR, Germany’s national aeronautics and space research centre. The agency cites the continent’s DNI as proof of this in its report for SolarPaces 2009. With the terrestrial radiation on Nigeria’s land area 2.079 x 1015 kWh/year, solar energy can be the answer to Nigeria’s energy needs.

The 70MWac solar power plant is the first of many other proposed solar power generating facilities for various sites in Nigeria.

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