Vergnet has announced the recent commissioning of a 500kWp solar/hybrid farm in the Republic of Kiribati, on the island of Tarawa, which is located in the central Pacific Ocean and home to half of Kiribati’s 110,000 inhabitants.

Inaugurated in October 2015, the solar photovoltaic project at the Tarawa Solar Farm was originally planned to deliver 400kWp. Since commissioning, this has been increased to 500kWp, supplying 870 MWh of energy on Tarawa and saving 290,000 litres of diesel per year. The project introduces a sustainable diversity of energy sources and also facilitates the countries growth.

The power from the solar photovoltaic project is exported to the local Public Utilities Board’s grid and aims to reduce the island’s dependency on diesel generators and its greenhouse gas emissions.

For the project, Vergnet utilized its patented Hybrid Wizard®, which was designed specifically to provide security of electricity supply for remote or island locations. The innovative solution maximizes renewable energy penetration, in this case from photovoltaic solar, into existing diesel systems in real time. It features an instantaneous feedback loop between the controller and generators, enabling users to constantly maximize penetration to what the existing electricity grid can accept.

This is Vergnet’s second project with developer Masdar, an Abu Dhabi renewable energy company, following the success of the partnership when delivering Samoa’s first wind farm.

Vergnet has a significant track record in developing energy solutions that are particularly suited to insular environments and believes these have a vital role to play in developing countries.

Through both wind and solar plants, Vergnet has installed approximately 43MW of wind and solar power throughout the Pacific region in areas including Samoa, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Fiji, Tahiti, New Zealand, Australia and Japan.