Conergy’s Spanish pilot project achieves grid parity

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German PV systems supplier Conergy has announced that its 8kW pilot PV project atop the roof of a restaurant located in Barcelona, Spain, has reached grid parity. The PV system also represents the company’s first plant in Spain which will be competitive without any subsidies.

The pilot project was set up in collaboration with its two installation partners Eco 100 and SolarTradex in order to explore the potential of the Spanish solar market, including whether grid parity was possible.

“This is the first project of its kind in Spain,” said Luis Jiménez Gutierrez, managing director of Conergy Spain. “The solar sector is moving away from an investment-driven market towards a genuine energy market, where the important criteria are availability of electricity and the price of every kilowatt hour. With this project, we can show very clearly that solar power is already competitive today, especially for businesses and companies that can consume the solar energy they generate themselves during daytime. In this scenario, the objective is no longer for the plant to be as large as possible but for it to be matched precisely to the customer in order to optimize electricity generation and consumption behaviour.”

During the design phase of the project, Conergy recorded and analyzed the restaurant’s consumption behaviour and the load profiles for several weeks. Based on its findings, the company sized the plant precisely to ensure that it would produce the maximum possible own consumption ratio and therefore electricity cost savings for the customer.

The project covers an area of 126 square metres and is composed of 34 Conergy PowerPlus modules fixed atop Conergy SunTop mounting frames, as well as a Conergy IPG T inverter.

The PV system will generate around 10,700kWh of electricity per annum which is enough power to meet on-site consumption while surplus electricity will be fed into the local grid. However, the restaurant will not benefit from any subsidies.

According to Conergy, the restaurant will consume 95% of the system’s output during the day, helping it to save up to 30% in costs compared with purchasing the power from the grid. Indeed, Conergy stated that the restaurant owners will barely draw any power from the grid during the day, which would otherwise cost them €0.15-0.17 per kWh. Over a 25-year period, Conergy calculated that the cost of generating the electricity through the rooftop plant will be around €0.10, which means that the restaurant operators will save €0.05-0.07 per kWh.

At night, the restaurant will continue to receive power from the grid. However, the rooftop installation will help it to achieve an autonomy level of 20%.

The rooftop PV system is due to connect to the grid in November.

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