ABB delivers locally manufactured inverter solutions for 86MWp solar plant in South Africa.

ABB is strengthening its position in the solar market in South Africa by delivering electric balance of plant for an 86 megawatt peak (MWp) project near Prieska in South Africa. This packaged inverter solution comprises locally manufactured inverter stations and medium voltage (MV) stations with related services.

The project has been developed by Mulilo Sonnedix and is to be built by Juwi ZA. The site is located in the Northern Cape region of South Africa close to Prieska, and forms part of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producers Procurement Program (REIPPP) round three projects. 

The nominal rating of the project is 76MW alternating current (AC.)The ABB plant is feeding the power to the national high voltage grid. The deliveries start in October 2015 supporting the rapid connection target to the distribution network in May 2016.

ABB’s scope of delivery includes forty 2MW photovoltaic systems (PVS) PVS 800-IS inverter stations (IS,) each containing two PVS800 central inverters, and respective MV stations with 2,4 MVA transformers and ring main units (RMU.)

ABB PVS800 central inverters and inverter stations are manufactured in ABB Johannesburg facilities as well as also the 22kV Ring Main Units (RMUs). Together with locally manufactured medium voltage transformer the local content of ABB delivery exceeds 60%. The hardware delivery is supplemented by a service offering that includes training and commissioning and local support for the years to come.

“The high efficiency, reliability and easy-to-maintain industrial design of our inverters, together with our local service and support capabilities, are the key success factors for ABB PVS800 central inverters in South Africa. All these together with the high local content that ABB is able to provide offer customers a real, bankable solution that we are able to support for years to come in South Africa, We are developing further our service organization in the region to meet the increasing installed base as I expect more deliveries to come,” says Silviu Martinescu, Manager of ABB’s business unit Power Conversion in South Africa.

According to Martinescu, Based on the latest estimates, just in South Africa, an impressive 1.041GW of PV capacity are expected to be installed within a three-year period through 2018.

ABB’s wide portfolio of different sizes of inverters, together with its other products for the solar industry, give customers an attractive one-stop shopping opportunity for packaged solutions for different sizes and types of plants.

The ABB PVS800-IS inverter station, rated from 1.75 to 2MW, is designed for multi-megawatt PV power plants. The inverter station uses two 875kW or 1,000kW PVS800 central inverters. Depending on the size of the PV power plant, several ABB inverter stations can be combined to meet the needed capacity. With a wide list of approvals and with advanced and flexible grid support functions, the inverter station meets all the applicable network connection requirements, regardless of where the project is located.

To help meet bankability requirements and secure the highest return on investment, ABB supports its customers with a dedicated global service network providing a complete range of life cycle services in more than 60 countries.

ABB is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve their performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 145,000 people. ABB established its operations in South Africa in 1992. Currently, ABB is present across South Africa having about 1200 employees and manufacturing facilities in Longmeadow and Alrode.

The ABB Sub- Saharan service hub and training center is located in Johannesburg. 

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