Solar power utilization in Nigeria on a large scale is long overdue. Many other countries in the world positioned well away from the equator have managed to harness the sun rays for commercial and residential use, and have done so for many years already.
Recently, the government of Morocco unveiled one of the largest solar farms in the world, which has replaced energy from fossil fuels to a significant extent.
While Lagos state has experimented with the use of solar energy for street lights, the exercise was not overly successful as most of the lights were not bright enough to justify further investment.
It is hoped therefore that the school initiative taken by Greenicles Solar will be extended to other facets of energy need in government circles and beyond.
Hopefully one day, we will see the advent of wind and even wave energy, both of which are perfectly viable energy options peculiar to Lagos State.
The Story: A power station, installed by Greenicles Solar, has enabled Iju Senior Grammar School, Lagos, become independent of the national grid.
The 13kW system was installed a year ago and has generated more than 24,300kW of electricity since its testing and commissioning in April 2015, about 10 per cent more than predicted.
The solar power system is made up of 100 Suntech 130W solar panels, pure sine wave inverters, maximum power point tracking charge controllers and a bank of 42 deep cycle batteries. These provide electricity to the classrooms, library, laboratory, computer rooms and administrative offices.
“The solar power system has made a very significant impact on the school. The learning environment has significantly improved. Our teachers and other staff have also gained from having constant and reliable electricity”, said a senior teacher at Iju Senior Grammar School. He added, “Moreover, we are confident that we will be making some financial savings on the long run as we do not spend money on our fuel-powered generators anymore”.
Greenicles continues its successful installations of residential and commercial solar power systems in Nigeria and estimates that by the year 2018 there will be a doubling of Nigeria’s solar market.
Solar power is well on its way to becoming one of the preferred alternatives to conventional power generators as increasing number of customers realize its prospects of financial savings on the long run and reliability.