Africa’s largest solar panel installed in Nairobi

solar car port system.
The system promises to produce 750,000KW hours of solar energy annually. PHOTO/FILE
Africa’s largest on-roof photovoltaic solar panel has been installed for the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in Nairobi.

Built by the German Energiebau Solarstromsysteme GmbH company, the 515 kWp photovoltaic system has transformed UNEP’s new administration block into the first climate-neutral building in Africa.

According to the managing director of Energiebau Mr Michael Schäfer, Energiebau installed the photovoltaic system for UNEP in close co-operation with and incorporating German solar technology from SMA Solar Technology AG, SCHOTT Solar and Kaneka of Japan.

In mid-2010, Energiebau Solarstromsysteme GmbH won the contract for the project, which had a three-month installation phase.

The solar power system consists of 4,000 modules and promises to produce 750,000 kilowatt hours of clean solar energy each year (a lot more electric energy than will likely be consumed by the building).

“Photovoltaics is developing into an important factor for the climate-neutral architecture of the future,” the Managing Director of Energiebau Michael Schäfer explained.

With a view to creating a broader impact across the region, Mr Schäfer said further systems will be put into operation through the development partnerships in Kenya and Tanzania, so as to demonstrate the many ways in which solar energy sources can be used.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Read the latest issue of Construction Kenya digital news magazine. Flip through the pages or download a copy to read offline. Sign up for a FREE subscription to get the paper delivered to your inbox every month.