Social project: Conergy plant for Thai school and children’s orphanage inaugurated
Hamburg / Phang Nga, 19 November 2012 – Yesterday, Sunday 18 November 2012, was a very special day for the non-profit organization “Yaowawit School and Lodge” in Kapong in Phang Nga Province in southern Thailand. Now that the new solar plant has been put into operation during an inauguration ceremony, it will be providing clean electricity for the 110 youngsters aged four to eighteen living at the Yaowawit home for orphans and socially disadvantaged children and for the attached school. This makes the children true young solar pioneers and the school probably the first such establishment with its own solar plant in the country of smiles. 324 Conergy modules will be producing 227,400 watt hours of electricity per day, supplying the school’s computers and air conditioning systems amongst other things while preventing around 43 tonnes of CO2 emissions each year.
“We were very happy when we heard about the opportunity to install a solar panel field in Yaowawit, since it will not only give our students the opportunity to learn about how solar energy functions, but it will reduce our energy costs for the next 25 years. The Yaowawit School is very grateful for this generous donation. We are proud to be the first school in the Phang Nga province, maybe even in all of Thailand, to have its own solar panel field. We will do our best to make it a learning centre for both our students and those in the neighboring communities and serve as a role model for others,” said the head of the school Kunchana Mailaeaid.
The plant was realised thanks to donations from the solar system supplier Conergy, the German Embassy in Thailand and the freight carrier Logwin Air+Ocean Thailand. The German Embassy provided 600,000 Thai baht for the charitable school project, which equates to 15,000 euros. Conergy has been involved in the solar sector in Thailand for many years already and is building its sixth large-scale solar park there. The system supplier did the planning for the plant for free and also supplied the necessary solar components, which Logwin’s Thai subsidiary transported from Germany to Kapong, which is around one and a half hours north of Phuket Airport and 40 minutes west of Khao Lak.
The roots of the school go back to an initiative of the German Federal Foreign Office and a number of German companies located in Thailand in the aftermath of the Tsunami catastrophe 2004. The idea then was to establish a home for Thai orphans who had lost their parents in the floods. The Yaowawit home and the attached school were established in 2006 by the “Children’s World Academy” and inaugurated by Princess Maha Sakri Sirindhorn. Since then, 110 pupils have found a new home here after losing their parents, families and homes. The home lies in the middle of the rainforest, at the centre of a 25-hectare plantation of mangosteen and oil palms. In 2008, the “Yaowawit Hospitality School & Lodge” was added as the foundation’s first vocational college project. Here, the children are acquainted with the hospitality business to improve their job prospects and enable them to break the poverty cycle. And by growing vegetables and rice, the children also supply the school and hotel kitchen with their own organic produce.
“In today’s renewable energy landscape we talk way too often about return on equity, the affordability of clean energy, subsidies and we tend to neglect the reason behind the global efforts to switch from nuclear power or conventional power to renewables, which is to protect our environment, the environment of our children”, said Conergy Board Member Marc Lohoff at the inauguration. “Today we need to protect the world of tomorrow, the world of these children here in the Yaowawit orphanage. Therefore, the entire Conergy team and I could not think of a better contribution than providing this solar field to this school. We hope that together we can instill the values of sustainability in the next generation.”
Conergy wins major contract for two solar power plants in Thailand totalling 21 MW
Hamburg / Bangkok, 8 November 2012 – Conergy’s success in Thailand continues and in the process underscores its outstanding market position in Southeast Asia’s growth markets. The solution and service provider has secured a major contract for two solar power plants in Thailand through a tendering procedure, representing a total capacity of 21 megawatts. The awarding authority is Thai Solar Energy Company Limited (TSE), which is a local investor with a registered office in Bangkok. Conergy will be the main contractor for those two projects, responsible both for planning, engineering and design as well as for component supply and installation of the two power plants. The solar parks are located in Suphanburi Province and in Kanchanaburi Province and cover almost 500,000 square meters. For the onsite construction, Conergy will work with its long-term local partners, Annex Power and the Ensys Group.
TSE’s COO, Ms. Cathleen Maleenont: “We use the best technology and know-how for our projects.”
Thai Solar Energy is one of Thailand’s solar pioneers. Today TSE already operates one solar thermal power plant with a total capacity of 5 megawatts in the Kingdom of Thailand, also located in Kanchanaburi. Now the company is expanding its portfolio with the two Conergy installations. “Since its inception, TSE has been dedicated to sustainability and protection of the environment. Furthermore, we use the best technology and expertise available on the market in building solar plants,” said Cathleen Maleenont, Chief Operating Officer of Thai Solar Energy Co. Ltd. “Conergy aligns perfectly with our aspiration as it has many years of success to show for itself in Thailand, with the construction of highly efficient installations according to European standards. That’s why we are very excited to have Conergy as a partner in this flagship project.”
Conergy’s CSO Marc Lohoff: “Conergy is a leader in the most attractive market in SEA.”
“Now with six power plants totalling 48 megawatts, Conergy is one of the market leaders in Thailand,” said Marc Lohoff, Conergy CSO Asia Pacific and Americas. “Thailand is not only Conergy’s most important solar market in Asia, it is also currently the most attractive one in the region. It’s a market where we know the local conditions in detail and where we are very well positioned. We want to expand that position in the future and are pursuing some very interesting opportunities there,” Lohoff added.
Conergy’s President Asia & ME Alexander Lenz: “By 2022, renewables should cover 25% of the country’s energy requirements.”
The potential in the sunshine-drenched “Land of Smiles” is large: Thailand averages irradiation levels of more than 1,800 kilowatt hours per square metre annually across the country and has a well-developed grid infrastructure. What’s more, the government is committed to clean, sustainable forms of energy and is pursuing ambitious goals in this area.
“The Thai government wants to meet one quarter of the country’s energy requirements using renewable energy sources by the year 2022. This is providing a baseline of support to the development of a solar energy market in Thailand,” stated Alexander Lenz, President Asia & Middle East for Conergy. “The country currently still imports around half of the national energy needs at high costs. Each new solar installation contributes to the gradual reduction of both dependence on energy imports and their costs for the government.”
Thailand promotes solar using power purchase agreements with energy providers
Licenses are used in Thailand to promote solar energy, similar to their use in the US. What are known as power purchase agreements (PPAs) guarantee that the government power provider, the Provincial Electricity Authority (PEA), will pay a set purchase price for solar electricity to the park operator. According to the Solar Power Policy dialogue that took place in September, of the 2,205 megawatts of PPAs that have been approved, only about 286 megawatts are currently connected to the grid. The remaining 1,919 megawatts are still in the pipeline.
Thai power purchase agreements comprise the average electricity price plus a premium which is called an “adder.” This adder is currently set at 6.5 Thai Baht – which is around 16 euro cents – and is guaranteed for 10 years. A power plant owner thus receives the sum of the average electricity grid price plus the adder as compensation. A feed-in tariff for commercial rooftop installations is also under consideration in the Kingdom in order to give more impetus to the use of renewable energy sources for electricity.
Conergy installations will supply solar energy to 14,000 Thai households
The two new solar installations are pursuing this goal as well. A total of almost 86,000 Conergy modules on around 86 kilometres of Conergy SolarLinea mounting systems will produce more than 29,500 megawatt hours of clean electricity after the power plants are completed in February 2013. That is enough to supply 14,000 local households in the Kingdom of Thailand. These solar installations also avoid creating about 15,700 tons of damaging CO2 emissions annually, which is more than what 1,570 hectares of forest area can absorb in the same period of time.
Saudi Arabia: New financial centre going for solar “Made in Germany” with Conergy
Hamburg/Singapore/Riyadh– The latest financial centre of Saudi Arabia, the King Abdullah Financial District (KAFD), will be reducing its dependence on the kingdom’s oil reserves and will be relying on solar technology from Conergy for a portion of its energy requirements. By installing a solar system on the roofs of parcels 5.07 and 5.08 – the first solar rooftop plant in Riyadh – the KAFD is choosing sustainable architecture with the aim of achieving one of the most significant eco certifications in the world: the “LEED Gold” certification awarded by the US Green Building Council.
At close to 200 kilowatts, the solar plant will not only be the first but also the largest rooftop plant in Riyadh. In collaboration with its local partner Modern Times Technical Systems (MTTS), Conergy will be installing over 800 Conergy PowerPlus 230M modules on some 1.7 kilometres of Conergy SunTop III mounting systems over a surface of 1,300 sqm. The 330 megawatt hours of clean energy generated each year – which could supply 1,500 computers in the financial centre – will be fed into the power grid of the metropolis via 14 string inverters. The solar plant will prevent the emission of 180 tons of the damaging greenhouse gas CO2 annually once it is connected to the grid by the first quarter of this year.
Conergy is providing support to companies in the Middle East on this new path towards sustainability. “The KAFD is no doubt an ecological pioneer, who we commend for playing this role,” says Alexander Lenz, Conergy President of South East Asia and the Middle East. “With its environmentally friendly architecture, the KAFD demonstrates how the Saudi financial sector can reduce its dependence on fossil fuels. With the first rooftop plant in Riyadh, the KAFD is setting an example – and simultaneously encouraging more green awareness and action in the Middle East.”
Currently, there are more solar plants under construction in Saudi Arabia with a total capacity of some 15 megawatts. Conergy has been contributing for many years now to the expansion of solar energy in the country: in 2010, the solar energy company erected the first, and at 2 megawatts also then the largest, solar plant of the kingdom on the roof of the “King Abdullah University of Science and Technology” (KAUST) in Thuwal. With its expansion into solar energy, Saudi Arabia is pursuing its goal of reducing its consumption of its oil and gas reserves that are intended for the export market. The Gulf state is instead planning to build their domestic infrastructure for renewable energy production. In June, the Saudi Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Ali Al-Naimi commented on the situation by giving the following statement to news agency Bloomberg: “Saudi Arabia plans to generate solar electricity equalling the amount of its energy from crude exports.”
According to Green Alpha Advisors, Saudi Arabia exports approximately 2.7 billion barrels of oil a year. With one barrel of crude corresponding to around 1,700 kilowatt hours of electricity, the entire oil exports of the kingdom is equivalent to 4,590 billion kilowatt hours per year, a quarter of the world’s energy demand. To produce this amount of energy would require close to a quarter of a million solar PV plants with an installed capacity of 10 megawatts each. Compared to the solar capacity installed in Saudi Arabia and its neighbouring countries of approximately 100 MW, these targets appear rather ambitious. But they also show that sustainability is now on the agenda in the sun-bathed Gulf state – and that solar energy is part of their solution to create a sustainable future.
Conergy wins bid to build 9MW solar park in Thailand
Bangkok, 14 December 2011 – CH. Karnchang Public Company Limited announced the selection of Conergy to supply the components and jointly serve as the engineering and design consultants for its 9MW solar park in Thailand. Conergy will also work closely with local partner Ensys Co. Ltd who will provide the local engineering and installation services for this project. The solar park is being built in cooperation with CH. Karnchang Public Company Limited subsidiary Bangkehnchai Co Ltd.
Target completion date for the solar park is June 2012. The 79,000 square meter project is located in Pak Thong Chai district, Nakhon Ratchasima province, Thailand, about 259 km. northeast of Bangkok.
The new solar park is expected to produce 12,778 MWh/year and supply power to nearly 4,000 households. The park will help Thailand eliminate an estimated 7,000 tons of CO2 emissions annually.
For CH. Karnchang Public Company Limited, the solar park project marks another milestone in the company’s 40 year history of developing outstanding infrastructure projects in Thailand and Southeast Asia. The 9MW solar park is the fourth solar park Conergy has undertaken in Thailand and represents the continued growth of the company’s pipeline of solar park projects in Southeast Asia.
Executives at the three companies agree that Thailand’s decision to increase its renewable energy targets to 25 percent of total energy consumption by 2022 is providing a baseline of support to the solar energy industry.
“The flood in Thailand has been very challenging but in no way will the flood impact our plan to continue building solar parks in Thailand. If anything, the type of extreme weather we see in Thailand and many other countries around the world is more reason to get behind solar power as a clean, sustainable, and safe source of energy,” said Alexander Lenz, President of Conergy South East Asia & the Middle East.
“I am very proud of the Conergy South East Asia team for securing this new project to build the next important solar power plant in Thailand, despite the recent unfortunate events caused by the severe weather conditions in the country. Their achievement again underscores Conergy’s strong position in the emerging South East Asian market, in line with our success in India, Australia and the Middle East. Customers trust our high quality solutions as they know that we are committed to deliver the highest performance systems even in the most challenging environments,” added Marc Lohoff, Corporate Vice President and President for Conergy Asia Pacific & Middle East.
“As can be clearly seen, the future is moving towards low impact and sustainable renewable energy resources and Thailand’s Power Development Plan is also focusing and following such global trends. We are very happy to be part of this 9MW solar park project of CH Karnchang together with Conergy to supply clean and sustainable power to our community,” said Chumpol Patanukom, Director of Ensys Company Ltd.
12.4 MW: Conergy and Annex Power build another solar park in Thailand with Conergy components
- Thai solar park trio: A total of around 18 megawatts in one year
- Conergy System Technology in Asia on the rise: Two 100% Conergy parks in 3 months
- Thailand’s Energy Authority DEDE: 12-14% growth in renewable energy in 2011
Hamburg / Singapore / Bangkok, 26 April 2011 – With the 12.4 megawatt solar park in Sai Prapa and Sai Yoi in Nakhon Pathom province, Conergy and Annex Power are building the third solar park on Thai soil within one year. The solar experts are constructing a park covering an area of 268,500 square meters – equivalent to the size of 25 soccer fields.
Double Milestone: Investor is building the second solar park with Conergy and Annex Power
With this project, Conergy and Annex Power further strengthen their position in Asia: On the one hand, the new solar park marks the second time in three months that an all-Conergy park will be built in the price-sensitive Asian market and Annex Power’s leading engineering services will be utilized. On the other hand, it is the follow-up project from the first Ayutthaya park for the investors Yanhee Solar and Ratchaburi Electricity who have entered into a joint venture agreement as Solarta to develop solar energy parks in Thailand. After the very positive experience with its first solar park built by Conergy-Annex Power, the investors now top it off: once completed, the new power plant will be more than four times as large as its predecessor.
Nevertheless, size is not everything. In the new solar park, quality plays a major role: 56,000 Conergy PowerPlus Premium modules set on over 56 kilometers of Conergy SolarLinea mounting systems will provide maximum yields. Over 200 Conergy IPG 15T string and 25 IPG 300C central inverters will be feeding the annual clean energy production of 19,500 megawatt hours of electricity into the local grid. The new solar park will supply more than 7,700 Thai households with clean solar electricity and avoid 11,500 tons of CO2 emissions per year, demonstrating that solar power can play a major role in providing clean, safe and reliable electricity in a large scale.
Sun instead of fossil or nuclear power: Thailand on its way to a solar future
The shift in thinking towards clean energy production has already taken place in Thailand. The Thai energy authority, the Department of Alternative Energy Development and Efficiency (DEDE), calls the year 2011 the golden year of renewable energies. Extremely volatile energy prices could, according to the authority lead to an increase of 12-14% of the renewable energy production in the country. They consider solar energy as the most promising renewable energy source. To continue to push this clean form of energy production forward, the DEDE has already announced its intention to “positively” review the existing solar funding scheme: In addition to the large solar parks, in the future, small solar systems on private rooftops could also benefit from the feed-in tariffs guaranteed by the state.
Investors like Dr. Supot Sumritvanitcha, founder and CEO of Yanhee Solar, are preparing the way into Thailand’s solar future: “The current situation in Japan shows once again that we are on the right track with the increased investment into solar energy in Thailand. For me, it is a good feeling when our country, the environment and the global economy benefits from our investment. Furthermore, solar energy offers excellent returns for investors – especially if you have such highly efficient partners as we have. We have been extremely pleased with Conergy and Annex Power’s performance with our first large-scale solar project in terms of quality, delivery and value. They have the technology and all the right people in place to deliver excellent quality from optimized systems design to on-schedule construction.”
Mr.Noppol Milinthanggoon, President of Ratchaburi Electricity Generating Holding PCL., a leading power producer in Thailand, states that “the company has been involved in many solar energy projects in Thailand with an aim to reduce fossil fuel usage and strengthen the reliability of the national power system besides reducing global warming. Renewable energy is one of our core businesses to respond to the government’s alternative energy promotion policy. We target to reach 100 megawatts in 2016. To date, we have collaborated with Solarta to develop 8 solar energy projects among which are the Sai Prapa and Sai Yoi projects in Nakhon Pathom Province. With the professional and extensive experiences in solar energy systems from Conergy and Annex, we are extremely confident that the Sai Prapa and Sai Yoi projects will significantly contribute to the achievement of our target.”
“We are indeed very honored to assist Solarta with this project,” said Daniel Gaefke, managing director of Annex Power. “The biggest satisfaction we can receive from developing projects is repeat business.”
Yields with a system: Premium quality meets output insurance
The 12.4 megawatt follow-up project benefits not only from the Conergy System Technology but also from additional services like the Conergy Output Insurance: “This conscious decision for Conergy quality components shows that even in the price-sensitive Asian market, quality plays an increasingly important role. With our comprehensive services, we deliver far more than just components. Our unique Output Insurance solution, underwritten by a third party insurance company, covers up to 90% of all yields for up to 10 years – previously this was almost inconceivable in Asia and now creates an outstanding planning and investment security,” according to Alexander Lenz, President of Conergy South East Asia & Middle East.
The best things come in threes: Conergy completes Asian triple
- 2 MW park on the roof top of the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology
- 9,300 solar modules on Conergy mounting systems and Conergy central inverters
- Asia Head Lohoff: “Alternatives to traditional fossil fuel have taken on a new urgency”
Hamburg / Al-Khobar, 19 May 2010– After recently building the two solar parks in Thailand and India, Conergy has now successfully made the Asian triple: The consortium of Hamburg-based solar experts and Saudi Arabia’s leading solar system integrator, National Solar Systems (NSS) have built the 2 megawatt park on the roof top of the renowned King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). It is the first and the largest solar installation in the Kingdom.
Saved greenhouse gas emissions: 6,000 times around the world in a car
The 2 MW solar plant consists of two rooftop solar installations with a capacity of one megawatt each, installed on the north and south laboratories of the university. The power system features premium components, combining over 9,300 high-efficiency solar modules with Conergy Suntop III mounting systems and Conergy 280K central inverters. The photovoltaic plant occupies 11,577 square meters of roof space and produces 3,332 megawatt hours of clean energy annually, while also saving up to 33,320 tons of carbon emissions. This equates to carbon offsets of approximately 6,000 circumnavigations of the world by car. Conergy designed the park and was responsible for the engineering, supervision and commissioning while installation works and operational management were implemented by National Solar Systems.
“Green” Teaching: Conergy supports the university’s ecological program
The solar park initiative is part of KAUST’s wider green technology program: the flagship university wants to advance solar energy research through its Solar and Alternative Energy Science and Engineering Center and deploy clean energy solutions on its campus. For their ecological engagement, they have recently been awarded the prestigious LEED Platinum award by the U.S. Green Building Council.
KAUST Spokesman: “We are pioneers and develop new and sustainable technologies”
A KAUST spokesman says: “We are proud to be among the solar pioneers in our country and to have the first and the largest solar park at KAUST. Despite our country being the largest oil-producer, we think that it is essential to develop new and sustainable technologies for the benefit of the Kingdom, the region and the world. This commitment is built into the DNA of our infrastructure as well as our research and academic mission.”
Conergy-Asia Head Lohoff: “Alternatives to fossil fuels have taken on a new urgency”
“We are extremely pleased to be part of this ground-breaking project”, says Marc Lohoff, Head of Conergy Asia Pacific and the Middle East. “We support the future of renewable energy in the Middle East with our solar know how and the latest technology. This project demonstrates that the development of alternatives to traditional fossil fuel has taken on a new urgency, even in oil-rich countries like Saudi Arabia.” Managing Director of National Solar System, Abdulhadi Al-Mureeh adds: “For the first time, clean power is flowing into the national grid. This is a historical event for us in Saudi Arabia. The strong collaboration and mutual cooperation between National Solar and Conergy was the secret formula behind this success.”
OPEC countries powering beyond petroleum – Solar energy on the rise in the Middle East
Saudi Arabia, the largest oil producer of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) with approximately one-fifth of the world’s proven oil reserves, is planning to make solar power a major contributor to energy supply in the next 5 to 10 years, according to the Kingdom’s Minister for Petroleum and Mineral Resources. “Saudi Arabia aspires to export as much solar
energy in the future as it exports oil now,” said Ali Al-Naimi, in an interview with Reuters. The latest sustainability research report from Bank Sarasin further predicts that the use of solar energy in the Middle East will grow at an annual rate of more than 50 percent in the next five years. The Middle East has the benefits of favourable insolation levels and extensive areas featuring very low population densities, which are ideal characteristics for the deployment of solar energy. Not only KAUST and its solar partners but also other big players in the energy branch see the opportunities of clean solar power in the Middle Eastern regions. Therefore, the landmark project was managed by Saudi Aramco, the world’s largest oil corporation and was executed by several large construction contractors including Saudi Oger.