MRIGlobal of Kansas City, Missouri, USA has been selected by Rex Investment Limited of Tanzania to perform a feasibility study and a pilot project to provide electricity to a remote island village in Lake Victoria that has no access to electricity. The project will be partially funded by an $818,000 (USD) grant from the United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA).
The estimated 60-80 kWp PV-battery-diesel hybrid minigrid will provide power for up to 400 residential households (~2,400 residents) in the Ukerewe District in northwestern Tanzania.
MRIGlobal will be supported in various phases of the project by the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), SunEdison, Enphase Energy, HOMER LLC, and Rulex Media, a local subcontractor in Tanzania.
The feasibility study and related pilot project will investigate and demonstrate the use of off-grid, hybrid PV-battery storage-diesel based minigrids in remote locations that are not currently connected to the national electric power transmission and distribution system.
The 18-month project is expected to provide the foundation to support the development of similar projects elsewhere in Tanzania and East Africa.
“We are excited to join Rex Energy on this opportunity to provide electrical access to rural populations in Africa,” said Thomas M. Sack, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of MRIGlobal.
MRIGlobal has installed and operated minigrids around the world for more than 10 years. This new program fills a critical need for rural electrification in Tanzania and will ultimately improve lives and help grow the local economy.
“With this grant and technical support from MRIGlobal, Rex Energy, the leading local private sector player in Solar Energy provision, once again assumes the leadership to complement Government efforts to transform rural Tanzania through solar powered rural electrification,” said Francis Kibhisa, Managing Director of Rex Energy.
ST Staff Writers
This post was prepared by Solar Thermal Magazine staff.