Revamping Namibia’s power system
By executing engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contracts for its inaugural large-scale battery storage project, Namibia has achieved significant strides in updating its energy infrastructure. The 54MW/54MWh Ombuu BESS project is a collaboration between the Namibia Power Corporation (NamPower), the Chinese JV Shandong Electrical, Engineering & Equipment Group (SDEE), and the battery maker-integrator Narada Power. Together, we can help Namibia’s power grid become more reliable and stable so that renewable energy sources can be more easily integrated into it. The project will highlight Namibia’s commitment to sustainable energy development while also creating jobs and boosting the local economy.
Timeline and Place of the Project
Taking place at the current Omburu Substation in the Erongo Region, the project is expected to finish in 18 months, with operations starting in late 2025. The Ombuu BESS project, which is funded by the KfW national development bank, will store excess electricity from renewable sources and imported power so it can be used during peak hours. By increasing the use of renewable energy sources, this will lessen the load on the nearby Van Eck coal power plant, improve grid stability, and cut down on emissions of greenhouse gases in Namibia. On top of that, the project will help the country reach its goals of increasing its renewable energy capacity, decreasing electricity costs, and becoming energy sustainable.
Minimizing imports while boosting energy trade
To enhance its energy trading capabilities and reduce the need for costly emergency imports from South Africa’s Eskom grid, Namibia is implementing this cutting-edge technology. At present, coal accounts for the majority of the country’s electricity imports, which can reach 70%. To achieve energy independence and promote a sustainable, environmentally friendly economy, it is essential to implement this state-of-the-art technology. Reducing reliance on foreign energy sources has multiple benefits, including bolstering national security and opening up opportunities to invest in renewable energy projects in the area, which are good for the environment and the people.
Energy targets and expenditures in renewable sources
By 2030, Namibia aims to have 70% of its generation mix come from renewable sources, and by the end of the decade, the country plans to have produced 80% of its energy domestically. There will be a huge drive for green innovation in the nation to invest in solar, wind, and other alternative sources in order to achieve this transition. To accomplish this lofty goal—which would benefit local economies and encourage technological advances in environmentally friendly practices—the public and commercial sectors will need to work together.
Making use of cutting-edge battery technology
Peak shifting, energy arbitrage, emergency backup power, ramp-rate control, and reactive power control are just a few of the many functions that the Ombuu BESS will carry out with the help of the lithium iron phosphate (LFP) cells manufactured by Narada Power. These state-of-the-art LFP cells are being used with the intention of making the energy sector much more efficient and stable. Power grid reliability and operational expenses are both anticipated to be significantly improved with the introduction of this novel energy storage system.
Advantages and progress in the future
The facility’s development, ownership, and operation will be overseen by NamPower. The company is keeping its fingers crossed that this ground-breaking project in Namibia will pave the way for even more fruitful endeavors in the future. If this facility is successful, it could pave the way for other similar projects in the area, which would increase the amount of renewable energy Namibia uses and help the country become more energy independent. In addition, future initiatives in the renewable energy sector may benefit from the information and expertise acquired from this project, which could lead to more efficient execution.
First Reported on: energy-storage.news
What is the main purpose of the Ombuu battery energy storage system (BESS) project?
The primary goal of the Ombuu BESS project is to improve the stability and reliability of Namibia’s power grid while supporting the integration of renewable energy sources into the network. Additionally, the project is expected to stimulate local economic growth and create job opportunities, underlining Namibia’s dedication to sustainable energy development.
Where is the project located and when is it expected to be completed?
The project is located in the Erongo Region at the existing Omburu Substation and is slated for completion in 18 months, with operations commencing in late 2025.
How will the Ombuu BESS project help in reducing greenhouse gas emissions?
The project will store surplus renewable generation and imported electricity for use during peak periods, reducing dependence on the local Van Eck coal power plant, enhancing grid stability, and incorporating more renewable energy resources into Namibia’s power system. This will ultimately help in decreasing greenhouse gas emissions.
What is the role of advanced battery technology in the Ombuu BESS project?
The Ombuu BESS will utilize Narada Power’s lithium iron phosphate (LFP) cells to perform various functions, such as peak shifting, energy arbitrage, emergency backup power, ramp-rate control, and reactive power control. The use of these advanced LFP cells aims to significantly increase efficiency and stability in the energy sector.
What are Namibia’s renewable energy goals and how does the Ombuu BESS project contribute to them?
Namibia has set a target for renewables to make up 70% of its generation mix by 2030 and intends for 80% of energy to be domestically produced by the end of the decade. The Ombuu BESS project will contribute to these goals by enhancing grid stability and decreasing greenhouse gas emissions through the integration of renewable energy sources into the power system.
How will the success of the Ombuu BESS project impact future developments in Namibia?
If the Ombuu BESS project is successful, it could lead to similar developments in the region, strengthening Namibia’s renewable energy portfolio, and contributing to the country’s energy independence. The valuable experience and knowledge gained from this project may also assist in facilitating more efficient execution of future endeavors in the renewable energy sector.