Soitec to build 50MW solar plant in South Africa

February 14, 2012 //By Anne-Françoise PELE
Soitec SA said its Concentrix Solar division has raised funds to build a 50-megawatt solar power plant in Touwsrivier, Western Cape, South Africa.

Soitec said Investec Bank Ltd., a specialist banking group operating in South Africa, Australia and the United Kingdom, has agreed to finance the project and raise the equity to build the solar power plant. Financial arrangements are expected to be closed by the end of the second quarter 2012.

The plant will be equipped with Concentrix Solar's fifth-generation concentrator photovoltaic (CPV) systems. The CPV system includes a 28 kW tracker of over 100 square-meters of module area and is designed to improve the Levelized Cost of Electricity (LCoE) for very large solar power plants.

Concentrix Solar said the system’s configuration improves upon its previous CPV products, boosting energy-generating efficiencies by 30 percent.

South Africa’s Department of Energy said it expects that 42 percent of all newly installed capacity in the next twenty years will be based on renewable-energy sources.

Concentrix Solar has been present in South Africa since 2008 and inaugurated a 60 kilowatts (kW) facility at the Aquila Private Game Reserve in Touwsrivier, Western Cape in August 2011.