|API factory to install 1 MW of solar power|
|Investment around $1.8 million|
|Advanced Plastic Industries Factory (API) has begun groundwork for the second phase of the installation of a 1 MW solar power photovoltaic (PV) system. The investment is $1.8 million.|
The project will be undertaken by local company, Elements, Sun and Wind, in partnership with German companies, SMA, manufacturers of inverters, and Solar World, manufacturers of PV modules and panels.
Located in the industrial zone of Zouk Mosbeh, the API factory has a built-up area of 19,000 square meters (m2). It manufactures polypropylene pipes and fittings and employs 160 people. The factory generates an average load of 650 KW in electricity powered by diesel generators operating on a 24/7 basis.
The factory is entirely powered by diesel generators. It is not connected to the national grid.
The solar power PV system, when finished, will take over the factory's spinning reserve, which is the extra generating capacity that is available by increasing the power output of generators.
"The project is both the first of its kind to be installed in the country and worldwide," said Joseph Sadaka, General Manager of Elements, Sun and Wind.
"We installed the first 200 KW at this factory in 2013 and decreased the use of diesel consumption generators but did not stop them fully. Now we are going to stop the generators completely through the use of solar power energy. This is a huge step," he said.
The PV system will be integrated with a lyceum iron battery capable of handling 1 MW. The battery will take the place of the generator set and cause the factory machines to operate.
Preparation work for the latest project will take at least six months. The system is expected to cut consumption by around eight percent.
Elements, Sun and Wind has already installed or is in the process of installing similar solar systems at three factories, Balkis Juice, RAR Resin in Jbail, and the Panda Plast factory.