South Africa’s largest solar power plant… REISA… Solar Power..

Renewable Energy Investment of South Africa.

A company called REISA has almost finished with a project 16 km from Kathu… This is a farm of solar panels, that when finished will produce 100 MW of power without any CO2 emission..

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I had passed the area before today on my way to certain areas of interest for my camera, but never expected to see what I saw today…

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Apparently the park is 75% complete and is now producing 75 MW of power that gets fed into the national power grid controlled by Escom…

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Escom’s coal fired electrical generating plants produce 36725 MW so a solar generation of 100 MW does not sound a lot in fact only 0.27% of our power… but if we save that percentage in carbon dioxide emission, then I’m all for the progress our country is making….

Above a few photos of the apparent 350 000 panels all mounted on their stands, all in rows as far as the eye can see… do they move with the sun ?? No one can tell me, or they don’t want to tell me…

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49 thoughts on “South Africa’s largest solar power plant… REISA… Solar Power..

  1. Just to answer the question in the article, yes the panels do move with the sun. As soon as the sun sets, the panels switch to their morning position, ready for another day in the sun!

  2. I have mixed feelings about these solar panel farms. They take up so much space and I don’t know whether the energy capture is efficient. I’m hoping that the technology continues to improve.

    • Yep area wise they do take a lot of space… but I hate these coal burners that spew out pollutants as well as all the coal mines that cause all the stink and dust… I’m afraid the only ones that seem to be pollutant free are the Hydro…. but I agree with you on the hope that technology continues to improve…

    • They would work well in Aussie land… not sure I’d want one on my door step… the sugar cane is a little closer to nature even if it only brings birds and snakes… lol… the panels will only bring dust… what then of your writers corner…??

  3. Not seen solar panels on this scale before. I doubt we would have enough sunshine or space to make this a practical option in the UK. Although considered unattractive, they are on the increase in the rooftops of domestic properties, allegedly reducing energy costs overtime.

    • These are placed in an area of SA that receives the most sun throughout the year, something that had to be studied before permission for construction was given… apparently it is the most suitable place for it in the land….

  4. These solar gadgets are awesome, but I think hail could be a problem. My dad’s solar geyser got smashed to bits the other day and the insurance is giving him quite a run around on it.

    I don’t think tracking the sun is such a hard thing to do. A friend built his own solar condensor and he managed to get it tracking the sun with about R200 worth of kit somehow. He said he looked at buying something to do that but they quoted him R10 000.

  5. WOW! Baie interessant. Dankie ook vir die deel. Ons sal ook na Solar krag moet kyk vir ons naweekplekkie in die berge. Eintlik sal baie mense na Solar moet begin kyk – hier in Polokwane is alreeds beurtkrag aant werke.

  6. Your contribution to the environment is greatly appreciated…We are starting to see the use of solar here in Seattle just soar. There is a program to retrofit the roofs of our skyscrapers and government buildings with solar panels.

  7. We have one of these in a Calif. desert. I was told when a bird flys over this vast amount of panels it is instantly fried. Hopefully they adapt and learn not the best way to go.

    • I was actually trying to capture photos of the weavers flying around the panels for a humerous caption about the bird droppings on the panels …. they seemed quite safe…. is it not a mith?

    • They are still happening with the construction of certain power sites still to be completed and brought on line… those power stations are what is causing the price hikes due to total mismanagement of projects…

    • We have s very strict law for just that… an environmental impact assessment has to be done before any such project can take place. … I have studied the assessment and no frog or lizard even was found to be disturbed. … it is in the semi desert of the Kalahari and actually in an ideal area for it…. well camouflaged from the ground level and actually in a good desolate spot

  8. Just wish Eskom would get on with building more of these and less of coal stations – that are all breaking down and leaving us in the dark anyway 😦 As far as I know solar panels are fixed and mounted at an angle to catch rays for most of the day – north facing in this country. Laura

    • The beaut of this, it is private companies building and fianancing them, so tax money is not being used to build them like the escom plants and then we still have to pay more for it…

    • Well they are talking of more of these… here in the Kalahari where the sun always shines with huge areas of nothing it would be ideal…. local groups are getting involved so that income will be ploughed back into the local community

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