The government of Chad through President Idriss Déby Itno has laid the foundation stone for the construction of two photovoltaic (PV) solar power plants with a combined capacity of 100 megawatts in the town of Gaoui which is located approximately 10km northeast of N’Djamena.
The project will be implemented by Merl Solar Technologies, a company whose origin is Australia and that has an excellent track record in planning and implementing renewable energy projects – particularly photovoltaic solutions in rural off-grid areas especially in Sub Sahara Africa.
Each of the two installations will have a capacity of 50 MWp, for a total of 100 MWp. They’ll both be equipped with 10 MVAh (megawatt volts ampere-hours) battery storage systems, a 33/90 kV electrical substation as well as 10 kilometers of high voltage line.
The project is set to be complete in a span of 12 months at a cost of approximately 150 million dollars. Merl Solar Technologies will operate the facilities under a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) signed with the National Electricity Company (SNE).
During this period SNE will be buying a kWh of electricity from the two photovoltaic (PV) solar power plants at about 0.1 dollars. After the 20 years period agreed upon, the solar power stations will become the property of Central African country.
The first step towards a vast and ambitious energy program
Speaking during the launch of the project, Ramatou Mahamat Houtoin, the Chadian minister of Energy said that the realization of this large-scale solar project will be the first step in a vast and ambitious program to implement “our emergency plan for access to electricity, ”.
On the other hand, Idriss Déby said, “This is the first phase of a major project that we have been planning for years. It is an opportunity for us because we are in Africa where there is always sunshine. We are going to diversify investments in the field of clean, solar and wind energy throughout the territory “he concluded.