UK-based solar solutions provider Solarcentury and local partner Momentous Energy have launched a joint venture based in Johannesburg that aims to capitalise on the growing alternative energy market in the southern African region.
Announcing the formation of Solarcentury Africa on Wednesday, Solarcentury CEO Frans van den Heuvel said it put the joint venture partners "ahead of the curve in being able to supply roof and ground installations to meet anticipated growing demand for solar energy from southern African countries".
Van den Heuvel said Solarcentury Africa had already completed its first project, a roof installation for a large South African property company, and was planning to install "the biggest solar roof-top system in South Africa" in the coming months.
According to Solarcentury, South Africa's annual 24-hour global solar radiation average is about 220 W/m², compared with about 150 W/m² for parts of the USA and about 100 W/m² for Europe and the United Kingdom.
"This makes South Africa's local resource one of the highest in the world."
Solarcentury boasts 15 years' experience in the international solar industry and a number of high-profile installations, including the award-winning solar bridge at Blackfriars in London.
Momentous Energy brings local knowledge and robust infrustructure to the joint venture. The company is currently building one of the first solar projects under the South African government's renewable energy programme for independent power producers, a 7 MW solar park in Rustenberg in North West province.