Renewable Energy
During 31 March to 1 April 2011, African hydropower experts, members of government, policy makers, regional planners and civil society representatives discussed the challenges for sustainable hydropower development at the Conference on Hydropower for Sustainable Development in Africa in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
The local organisation Trade Plus Aid (TPA), in collaboration with Swiss-based Acrona Systems, recently launched the Capstone range of microturbines. The technology produces very low carbon emissions, making microturbines a clean, green, reliable source of energy.
In order to make silicon for PV solar panels, silicon manufacturers use what is called the “Siemens process” (named after the 19th century German inventor, Ernst Werner von Siemens). The process involves purifying less pure forms of silicon and, in order to address costs, producers have been wondering how they could cut down the Siemens process in order to save money. An Australian quartz mining company may have found the answer.
“The annual global world energy consumption is approximately +/-500 exajoule (500 x 1018 joule) – 80% of this energy is provided from non-renewable fossil fuel, 10% from biomass, 5% from hydro electricity power plants, 5% from nuclear power and less than 1% is from other renewable sources such as wind and solar power,” explained Dr Anton Vosloo, portfolio executive of alternative energy at Sasol.
MAKE Consulting’s Market Outlook 2011 predicts that the global wind turbine market will expand in 2011, with an estimated growth of 18%, after the global growth in new grid connected wind capacity slowed down in 2010.
In February, SDE Energy announced that Kenya’s Ministry of Energy had granted official approval for them to build a 100 MW power plant on the Kenyan coastline. The plant will be powered by wave power and will be the first of its kind in East Africa.The power plant will be constructed in conjunction with the indigenous firm Sea Wave Gen.
Thousands of people living in the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan region will benefit from warm water that has been heated by the sun.
Friday, 28 January 2011 13:42

Mining South Africa’s solar resources

South Africa has the potential to create nearly 200 000 new jobs by 2020 through focusing its efforts on growing the concentrated solar power industry. However, current targets being set by the government are not yet enough to stimulate this new industry.
Scientists at the US Department of Energy’s Los Alamos National Laboratory and Brookhaven National Laboratory have developed a material that could transform an ordinary-looking window into a solar panel.
Ernst & Young has released its Country Attractiveness Indices, which give a numerical ranking of 30 global renewable energy markets by scoring renewable energy investment incentives and resource availability. According to the report, Egypt is one of four new entrants to the list (the other three countries are South Korea, Romania and Mexico).