Mining Solar Solution
Australian Mining companies are realizing that the abundance of sunshine in Australia makes it a worthwhile exercise to harness the power of the sun to create solar energy and reduce energy costs.
With 24-hour operations and vast technical equipment, mine sites are a source of high energy consumption and are often in remote areas where they aren’t connected to the power grid. Their main dependence is on diesel-generated power plants to produce electricity. This, along with the numerous costs of mining itself, makes diesel-generated power a very pricey expense for mining companies and can pose challenges such as transport and logistics.
“Some mines in Australia operate in incredibly remote locations, and the cost of electricity is upwards of $300/MWh,” Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) CEO Ivor Frischknecht said.”
Energy creation costs can account for 15 – 20% of mining company costs. So, with the growing trend of solar energy implementation, with all its benefits of reliability and efficiency is hard to overlook. Mining companies such as Rio Tinto and Sandfire Resources are embracing this exciting technology with large scale solar infrastructure.
Rio Tinto, in 2015, commissioned Australia’s first commercial diesel displacement solar plant which produces about 2800 megawatt hours of electricity per year and reduces the diesel usage at the power station by up to 600,000 litres per year. This savings reduces greenhouse gas emissions by around 1600 tonnes per year and gives the added economic benefit of being able to trade Carbon Offset Credits.
There is no doubt that solar energy prevents attractive solutions to save on energy creation costs while also reducing your company’s environmental footprint. Depending on fuel costs and solar irradiation, in some parts of the world, it is possible to recover your total investment in less than 2 years. So, with the output guarantees of our solar panels, you have many years after that time to enjoy free daytime power.
We understand the importance of a reliable and cost-effective energy system so let us help design a system for your needs.
There has never been a better time for you to invest in a Mining Solar Solution.
What are the benefits of a Mining System
• Reduce or eliminate diesel costs
• Maximize performance and minimize downtime
• Easy integration with existing diesel-generation power systems
• Reliable and consistent energy availability
• Complete energy independence
• Ability to remotely carry out advanced asset management
• Greenhouse gas reduction and ability to trade Carbon Offset Credits
• Ability to promote / market your green credentials
• Enforce your company’s commitment to reducing your environmental footprint
What are the options for Solar Energy in Mining?
The most popular solution for Mining is a solar hybrid power system that combines solar power with another power generating energy source. A common type is a photovoltaic – diesel hybrid system, combining photovoltaics (solar panels) and diesel generation. Solar Panels or a Solar Farm are easily integrated to existing diesel generation power supplies.
Diesel hybrid systems while presenting up to a 50% savings in diesel consumption for daylight hour usage, can be compounded by adding battery storage to cover your energy needs after daylight. There are several options for battery storage including Vanadium Batteries or Lithium Iron Batteries. There is also the well proven technology of hydrogen production and power generation that is now becoming a popular choice worldwide. All have their merits but need to be tailored to your specifics requirements.
In most cases, you will require a specific and specialised solution. A solar system the size required to power a large industrial or mine site operation may require a solar farm and, for after daylight hours operation, a battery storage or backup solution.
How does a photovoltaic / solar diesel hybrid system work?
With all the system options, the creation of the energy is the same. This happens when sunlight hits the solar panels, and the sun’s rays are converted into electricity or solar energy. What happens from here is dependent on the system you choose.
The solar diesel hybrid system complements the diesel generators. The solar power created passes to the solar inverter to be converted to AC power where is can be used to power all your equipment. The system can be programmed to supply additional energy when loads are high or relieve the generators to minimize its fuel consumption.
When you introduce a Battery Bank to the system, to cover any night hours power usage, the energy will flow from the solar panels to a charge controller then into your Battery Bank. From there, the energy will flow to your inverter for power currency conversion making the power ready for your appliances.
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