In order to diversify the country’s energy mix, the Tunisian government has put in place a program to increase the share of renewables in overall electricity production from 3% currently to 30% by 2030. German-based Suntrace implemented a cutting-edge solar measurement station at the Gabès power plant, run by a Consortium consisting of Akuo, HBG and Nour Energy, which will be equipped with bifacial solar photovoltaic panels and single axis trackers.
The Gabès power plant will allow approximately 23 GWh of renewable and decentralized electricity to be produced locally each year. This is the equivalent to more than 14,000 inhabitants. The project’s financing should be completed in 2021 and the plant is expected to become operational in 2022.
Suntrace was mandated to evaluate the solar resource at utmost accuracy with their HelioScale α station, an all-in-one solution that provides fundamental solar radiation and meteorological parameters. Its self-sufficient design enables the implementation even in remote areas and harsh environments. For the further course of any solar-plant project, such solar measurement stations are essential to optimize the use of the generated solar power, charge the batteries when possible, and use the available gensets only when necessary. Thus, the HelioScale system aims to improve solar yield prediction, reduce uncertainties and to minimize costs.
An additional Soiling Measurement System allows quantifying the site-specific effects of soiling on photovoltaik (PV) cells. From the measurements, both overall soiling and seasonal fluctuations may be derived and cleaning cycles optimized. Since soiling losses may lie in the order of 20% for such arid regions, this is a highly import aspect to successful PV operation.
Due to travel restrictions in the context of the Corona Pandemic, installation was successfully carried out remotely with the help of local experts, thoroughly trained by Suntrace.