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Kathu solar plant synchronised to the grid

The first synchronisation of Kathu Solar Park to the national grid took place on 18 November 2018. Once completed, the facility will provide clean energy to 179,000 homes.
Photo: SENER
“With the successful first synchronisation at Kathu Solar Park, we are heading into the final stages of the construction and commissioning phase of the project that will ultimately reach the COD (commercial operation date) for the plant in the next couple of months. Once fully operational, the plant will provide clean energy to the local community of the John Taole District Municipality, the Northern Cape Province and South Africa as a whole,"says Siyabonga Mbanjwa, SENER Southern Africa Regional managing director

The molten salt thermal energy storage system will allow the plant to operate in a cost-effective manner, storing the generated energy from the sun, producing and dispatching electricity, in absence of solar radiation, to satisfy South Africa’s peak demand.

Construction on the unit began in May 2016, and it is expected to be completed in early 2019. During this phase, around 1,200 jobs are being created impacting positively the local employment prospects. In addition to this, it is estimated that the Kathu Solar Park will save six million tons of CO2 over 20 years, and it will foster more local economic development through several project.
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