Solar Market Outlook in Senegal
A partnership between the World Bank, IFC, the European Investment Bank and Proparco has worked together to finance two solar PV plants in Senegal. This solar project is projected to provide clean and sustainable power from solar sources for more than half a million Senegalese residents.
The two solar plants mentioned above were launched in May of 2021 with a total solar capacity of 60 MWac. The plants will generate energy with a tariff making it one of the cheapest electrical costs in the Sub-Saharan region of Africa. But apart from the access to affordable and sustainable energy, it’s the ability to reduce carbon emissions by 89,000 annually that will be the biggest benefit of installing these new plants.
The two projects are a result of the auctions that were tendered by the Senegalese government through the Energy Regulatory Commission. Despite the growth in the number of residents in the country that now has access to power, there is still a significant amount of them that lacks access to electricity. But things are looking up with the affordability of solar power especially since the previous source – fuel imports – was too costly for the economy to sustain.
Solar Energy Equipment Supply Capacity in Senegal
The availability of local suppliers of solar power in Senegal is rather limited. However, there are plenty of local and online suppliers of solar power equipment to small- and large-scale installations.
Top 8 Major Seaports & Logistics in Senegal
Senegal benefits from its exceptional location that facilitates efficient and easy logistics and trade activity. It has many functioning ports used for commercial activity such as Dakar, Thies, and Ziguinchor.
Solar Water Pump
Solar water pump definition
A solar water pump is a mechanical pump powered by electricity generated using photovoltaic panels. It is popularly referred to as a solar water pumping system because it requires several key components to work. The critical constituents of a functional water pump include;
- A solar panel array
- A mechanical DC water pump
- Photovoltaic cables
- A fuse box
- A solar charger control
You can employ a solar water pump in various applications, including crop irrigation and drinking water supply. Currently, it is the most suitable option for all your pumping needs because it has several benefits. It is essentially more efficient to operate and less costly to maintain than traditional fossil fuel-powered pumps. More importantly, it is environmentally friendly primarily because it runs on renewable solar energy. How exactly does it work?
The solar water pump’s working principle
When most of us hear of a solar water pump, we assume it is pretty challenging to use. I can confidently tell you that its usage is pretty straightforward once you install all the necessary components. Figure 1 below offers an outline of the main things you need to have in place for your solar water pump to work efficiently;
Figure 1: Components of a functional solar water pump system
The solar array absorbs solar energy and converts it into electric energy. The solar water pump’s inverter converts the DC electric current output generated by the photovoltaic system into AC. The AC electric current powers the pump and propels water from the source to the intended destination.
It is also crucial to note that the inverters regulate the electricity output frequency and voltage instantaneously. These regulatory actions correspond to variations in sunlight intensity. In simple terms, the system switches to supplementary energy automatically when sunlight intensity weakens. Is this not enough to convince you that a solar water pumping system is worth its investment?
Classifications of solar water pumps
There are several classifications of solar water pumps that you can choose from depending on your specific needs. The main varieties of solar water pumps include;
- The submersible solar water pump
This type of pump is ideal for deep water sources such as wells. It can lift up to 650 feet of water provided the sunlight energy can generate sufficient electricity to power the pump. Consequently, it is advisable to pump and store water when the sun’s intensity is at its best.
- The surface solar water pump
This pumping system is suitable for shallow water sources, including streams, storage tanks, and ponds. They can comfortably lift water with a depth of not more than 20 feet. If you intend to draw water beyond this depth, it would be best to settle for submersible pumps.