Concentrix Solar will inaugurate its first concentrator photovoltaics (CPV) power facility in South Africa on Sept. 1, a 60kW system installed at the Aquila Private Game Reserve in Touwsrivier, Western Cape. The company said that this is the first step in developing large-scale solar power projects in the country.
Concentrix Solar also revealed that it is actively pursuing a project development for a 50MW utility-scale power plant in the Western Cape, which is one of the largest CPV installations anywhere currently under consideration. The German company has been present in South Africa since 2008 and claims that it has the ability to develop large-scale solar projects and deliver turnkey solutions under local conditions using local content.
“CPV systems are perfectly suited for the use in South Africa with its energy shortage, water scarcity and high temperatures,” said Hansjörg Lerchenmüller, CEO of Concentrix (a division of the Soitec Group). “Our systems can be easily and fast implemented, they do not need cooling water and do not suffer from heat degradation at hot ambient temperatures. In addition, this facility will initiate the transfer of know-how and serves to develop local skills in South Africa with immediate effect.”
Concentrix also recently opened a U.S. subsidiary, received IEC certification and CEC listing for its modules, and will see its modules installed by year’s end as part of a 1MW CPV power system under construction in New Mexico.
The CPV market is expected to reach 20MW in 2010, then rapidly grow in subsequent years, reaching deployments of 150MW in 2011, according to industry forecasts. Lerchenmüller told PV-Tech earlier this year that one potential bright spot could be Italy, where feed-in tariffs specifically targeted for CPV could result in scores of megawatts of business, if approved.