A consortium, led by the Carlifornia-based SolarReserve and the International Company for Power and Water (ACWA), has signed a 20-year long power purchase agreement (PPA) with Eskom, the South African utility.
The power will be supplied by the Redstone Solar Thermal Power Project, to be located near Postmasburg in the Nothern Cape Province.
The 100MW solar thermal plant will also feature 1,200MWh, or 12 hours, of energy storage – enough to annually power 200,000 homes.
The Redstone Project is the first of its kind on the continent, as it will use SolarReserve’s proprietary ThermaVault™ technology – which features integrated molten salt energy storage.
The South African grid will receive 100MW of non-intermittent energy from the power generating and storage facility, during both the day and night.
The PPA specifies that the project will deliver energy for up to 17 hours to meet demand.
“The Redstone project marks an important technology advancement for South Africa in clean, renewable power,” commented Kevin Smith, CEO of SolarReserve.
“Due to fully integrated thermal energy storage, the facility will provide power on-demand, just like conventional coal, oil, nuclear or natural gas-fired power plants, but without harmful emissions or hazardous materials, and without any fuel cost or foreign exchange risk.”
“We look forward to working with our partners and stakeholders, including the communities where the project is located, to support South Africa in meeting its energy supply targets, stimulating long-term economic development, and creating new jobs and businesses.”