A consortium led by SolarReserve and International Company for Water and Power Projects (ACWA Power) has been selected as the preferred bidder for a 100 megawatt (MW) Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) in South Africa.
The Redstone Solar Thermal Power project, with the lowest tariff bid to date among CSP projects in South Africa, is scheduled to achieve financial close later in 2015 and commence operations in early 2018, officials said.
The electricity generated from this project will be the cheapest among the CSP projects in the country.
The project is developed in response to the DOE’s Round 3 (CSP) Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Program (REIPPPP).
This CSP project is estimated to cost around R6 billion over the first 20 years of operation. In addition, another R150 million per year will be spent on operating cost of the project.
The Redstone project with 12 hours of full-load energy storage is expected to supply power to more than 200,000 South African homes.
This Thermal Power Project features SolarReserve’s molten salt energy storage technology in a tower configuration similar to Crescent Dunes project in US developed by the company.
Besides, the dry cooling of power generation cycle which will help in minimizing water usage is another feature of the project.
The projects guarantee maximum local participation and technology transfer and is expected to create more than 800 direct jobs during the construction phase.
A portion of the fund provided by South African suppliers which comprises almost 40 percent of the total project (R2.4 billion) will support Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) activities as mandated under all REIPPPP.
ACWA Power has recently completed 50 MW Bokpoort CSP project in South Africa and the Noor 1, 160 MW solar thermal power plant in Morocco.
The Redstone Solar Thermal Power Project will be located in Postmasburg, near Kimberley in the Northern Cape Province, adjacent to the 75 MW Lesedi and 96 MW Jasper photovoltaic (PV) solar power projects developed by SolarReserve.
Together, the three projects comprise the world’s first combined CSP and PV solar park with a total of 271 MW of generating capacity.
The Redstone Project adds another milestone in ACWA Power’s target of adding renewable energy capacity to its portfolio of generating 15.5 gigawatts of electricity and producing 2.4 million cubic meters of desalinated water.