Investigating alternative power generation strategies for local municipalities that are tied to the national grid

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Publicado en 3C Tecnología – Volumen 10 Número 3 (Edición 39)



Escalating electrical energy usage and costs over the past few years has resulted in large utility bill expenses that municipalities are struggling to pay-off to National Energy Suppliers. Furthermore, some energy suppliers are struggling to meet the demand for more energy due to a variety of factors. The challenge therefore exists in identifying viable alternative power generation strategies for local municipalities to reduce their current electrical energy expenses or to provide limited power to their community when disconnected from the National Grid. An environmentally friendly renewable energy strategy method could be used to supplement the current energy requirements of a municipality during months of high energy demand. The main focus of this study will be on a small town in the Free State province of South Africa, called Koffiefontein. A battery-based solar PV system was designed in the Homer software and chosen as the renewable energy strategy to supplement the current energy needs of Koffiefontein due to its performance and cost effectiveness. The initial implementation cost of the system is $ 42 995 649.95. The cost of energy for the PV system suggested for Koffiefontein houses is $ 0.40/kWh with the yearly electricity production of 27 661 kWh. The payback period of the system is 45.3 years. The municipality needs to consider installing battery-based solar PV system to supply businesses in Koffiefontein during their high demanding hours and during load shedding as the system indicates an affordable cost of energy with high yearly production.


Palabras clave

Solar PV Systems, Wind Turbine Systems, Load Shedding, Energy Audit.

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