Abengoa together with project partners Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and the Khi Community Trust, recently welcomed representatives from the government of South Africa to celebrate the completion of the construction of the Khi Solar One tower. According to the company, this achievement marks an important milestone in the execution of this project, a significant development for CSP tower technology itself, as well as a strong positive impact on the community and the country.
A delegation, including members of the South African government, visited the 205-meter tall tower of Khi Solar One in the Northern Cape province near Upington, where the national flag was raised next to those of the project partners. Guests were given a tour through the installation and some of the suppliers’ facilities.
Khi Solar One, a 50 MW superheated steam solar tower with two hours of thermal storage, represents an important technological advance in tower efficiency by using higher temperatures and an innovative dry cooling system says Abengoa. This advancement comes on the heels of the R&D work done by the company in its research centers and pilot plants.
Khi Solar One and KaXu Solar One, Abengoa’s 100 MW parabolic trough plant also under construction in the Northern Cape, will be the first concentrating solar power plants in operation in South Africa. The South Africa Department of Energy intends to bring 17,800 MW online from renewable sources by 2030, framing South Africa’s strategy for energy independence. The solar projects form a part of this strategy, as well as have additional environmental benefits: creating roughly 1400 local construction jobs on average per annum, peaking near 2000, and about 70 permanent operation jobs, as well as reducing the country’s carbon dioxide emissions by about 498,000 tons each year.