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Danvest / THEnergy study: Low-load Gensets for Solar–Diesel Hybrid Plants in the Mining Industry


Often, remote mines are not connected to the power grid and so generate their electricity through conventional diesel power plants. The price of diesel at these remote mines is also rather elevated owing to additional transportation costs, taxes, and theft. In general, the costs of power generation in remote and isolated areas are relatively high. In many sectors, off-grid hybrid power systems with diesel gensets in combination with solar or wind energy are gaining importance as prices of photovoltaics (PV) and wind turbines have fallen lately and technologies have matured. In recent years, the combination of PV and diesel has often become the first choice for powering remote locations. Nevertheless, in comparison to the global potential of diesel gensets, this trend is still in the early stages. Bloomberg New Energy Finance estimated the installed base of diesel gensets in 2011 at 150 GW in developing countries alone. The main objective of the study is to evaluate the commercial potential of low-load generators in PV–diesel hybrid applications in the mining industry.

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