France-based energy management firm Schneider Electric has inaugurated the Microsol project which aims to develop a single, modular standard technology for producing electricity, drinking water and heat simultaneously, the company said.
The project is primarily to benefit micro-industries located in rural areas of countries with high levels of sunshine, especially in Africa, it said in a statement made available to PANA here Monday.
The company explained that Microsol is based on the principle of co-generation of electricity and heat, applying a new approach to a technology that is already widespread – solar thermodynamics.
The solution focuses its constraints on the design of thermal storage that only uses environmentally-friendly products.
”Its purpose is to simultaneously meet three basic needs regularly expressed by these people: Access to electricity that is reliable, efficient and inexpensive; Clean drinking water that is produced economically and consistently; and heat generation that is continuous and environmentally sound,” said the firm, which is the market leader in energy management with operations in more than 100 countries,
A Microsol solution produces 50 MWh/year of electricit, 1,000 m3/year of drinking water, and around 800 MWh/year of thermal energy. The solution has an expected life of at least 20 years.
“That technology can help Africa’s poorest countries,” said Pradeep Monga, Director of the Energy & Climate Change Branch of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), while attending the inauguration of Microsol solution.
Gilles Vermot Desroches, Senior Vice-President, Sustainability, Schneider Electric, announced: “All countries with high levels of sunshine are potential targets for marketing Microsol. However, because of its infrastructure needs, geographical location and economic models, Schneider Electric and its partners decided to focus their efforts on Africa.”
After market research, the consortium led by Schneider Electric chose Kenya as pilot country for the industrialisation and commercialisation of Microsol, saying Kenya meets a set of favorable conditions for the establishment and development of this solution.