ARE Member Solarworx completes first successful microgrid in Zambia
Mumbwa, Zambia, 30 October 2021 – ARE Member Solarworx has been able to complete the first pilot installation of its innovative DC Microgrid in the area of Mumbwa, Zambia. The grid builds upon existing Solar Home Systems from Solarworx or other manufacturers and allows sharing the excess power from solar panels or battery capacity. Costs are considerably lower than for AC mini-grids, enabling bottom-of-the-pyramid households to receive a grid-like electricity connection.
Together with the local partner Little Sun Zambia Ltd. and with the great contribution of the people of Mumbwa we have successfully set up a first grid of 10 interconnected households, another 15 connections are underway. All devices report net metering and technical data remotely, which allows now to fine tune operating principles and to analyze the financial viability of the grid.
The energy transfer is billed autonomously and anonymously, producers receive mobile money for sharing their energy while consumers pay for the consumption. The Microgrid devices allow a bidirectional power transfer of 250 W per access point.
Solarworx is cooperating with EEP Africa for the roll-out of the DC-Microgrid. The RES Project Zambia is supported by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy as part of the Renewable Energy Solutions Programme of the German Energy Solutions Initiative.