Month: February 2017

 

There is no room for error; We offer quality solar power that meets American & European Codes!

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AWPS Renewable Energy Ltd Nigeria’s #1 provider of premium solar power. We accomplished this by our team of the most experienced and highly skilled employees.

Our professional workforce focuses on the design and installation of everyone’s project, right down to the smallest of details.

The quality of solar power equipment we use are not easy to come bye. They are all from Europe. Therefore, we always install to meet American & European toughest codes.

CombinerBox

Another one more reason why we are rated so high in solar power sector in Nigeria is how we always use a combiner Box. This allows us to protect our solar panels & charge controllers. Wiring from the panels have the largest of current that can flow through. The combiner box allows us to get around that maximum with more breakers.

The combiner box is rated for outdoor use. it’s designed for combining PV strings up to 150VDC and 120amps total using breakers or high voltage strings up to 1000VDC using 10mm x 38mm fuses up to 80 amps total.

CombinerBox

AWPS Renewable Energy Ltd has made its goal to be the standard setter for the solar power energy industry and to bring quality premium solar power to your home and business.

Our take is, there is no room for error. Each solar power system is meticulously designed by a team of highly skilled and experienced professionals, who have designed over 50 solar power systems in 13 States, the FCT and a major big one in Accra Ghana.

We work closely with each customer to make sure that the system operates consistently and reliably. We realize that a system that is expected to run for many years needs fast and professional support.

 

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How do you Monitor your solar power Systems?

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Nigeria’s #1 provider of premium solar power (AWPS Renewable energy Ltd) provides quality and reliable solar power that meets American and European codes.  Another reason why we are ahead of the competition is the integration of  SCP and AGS for solar power  installations.

These are valuable monitoring tools you hardly see the competitors install.  Because of this, you may not be able to monitor and communicate with your systems as you should.

The Conext System Control Panel (SCP) eliminates the need for separate control panels for each device and gives a single pothe int of control to set up and monitor the entire Conext inverter charger system, including Conext MPPT Solar Charge Controllers.

SCP

SCP Features a graphical back-lit liquid crystal display, the SCP selectively displays configuration, status and diagnostic information for all devices connected to the Xanbus network.

We always install The Conext  Automatic Generator Start (AGS) on all our solar power systems.  with this you can automatically activate or stop a generator in response to changing power requirements.

AGS

AGS is an excellent addition  we use for an off-grid or backup power system, the AGS seamlessly connects to the Xanbus network and shares status information with all other devices on the network.

The Schneider AGS we install can monitor a set of system user-programmable parameters such as battery voltage, state of charge or grid power and can activate the generator in response to any changes. The AGS can also be configured remotely using the Conext System Control Panel (SCP) or Conext ComBox to engage a generator, and can assist your inverter/charger when output power demands are high.

AWPS Renewable Energy Ltd is Nigeria #1 provider of premium quality solar power, Come to us for solar power, we assure you of quality solar power with European Inverters, Charge Controllers, SCP. AGS and US batteries.

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Last March, Jaffe presents his plan for Space-based solar Power!

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Space-based solar power has had a slow start, but the technology may finally take off in the next few decades.

Credit: Futurism

Since its inception, solar power has had a severe limitation as a renewable energy: it only works when the Sun is shining. This has restricted the areas where solar panels can be effectively used to sunnier, drier regions, such as California and Arizona. And even on cloudless days, the atmosphere itself absorbs some of the energy emitted by the Sun, cutting back the efficiency of solar energy. And let’s not forget that, even in the best of circumstances, Earth-bound solar panels are pointed away from the Sun half of the time, during the night.

So, for over half a decade, researchers from NASA and the Pentagon have dreamed of ways for solar panels to rise above these difficulties, and have come up with some plausible solutions. There have been several proposals for making extra-atmospheric solar panels a reality, many of which call for a spacecraft equipped with an array of mirrors to reflect sunlight into a power-conversion device. The collected energy could be beamed to Earth via a laser or microwave emitter. There are even ways to modulate the waves’ energy to protect any birds or planes that might wander into the beam’s path.

The energy from these space-based solar panels would not be limited by clouds, the atmosphere, or our night cycle. Additionally, because solar energy would be continuously absorbed, there would be no reason to store the energy for later use, a process which can cost up to 50 percent of the energy stored.

Proponents of this energy strategy argue that we have all the basic science necessary to design and deploy space-based solar panels, but opponents, like Tesla’s Elon Musk, counter that the upfront costs are too high. In 2012, Musk suggested to Popular Mechanics that we should “stab that thing in the heart.”

GETTING OFF THE GROUND

As climate evidence continues to demonstrate, energy production has more costs to consider than simply the dollars and cents on the price tag. An efficient, renewable source of energy with a small carbon footprint and virtually no waste seems to attractive to ignore for many environmentally conscience individuals including Paul Jaffe, spacecraft engineer at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory.

Last March, Jaffe presented his plan for implementing space-based solar at the Department of Defense’s first-ever Diplomacy, Development, and Defense (D3) Innovation Summit Pitch Challenge. Out of 500 submissions, Jaffe’s plan for implementing space-based solar took home four of seven awards. Jaffe presented a plan that he said would have demo orbital power station capable of powering more than 150,000 homes in orbit within 10 years for $10 billion. Jaffe said that investment would pay off in the long run.

“Over time, things become more efficient. Wind and solar literally took decades to get competitive with carbon-based alternatives. I see similar potential here,” Jaffe said in an interview to Salon. “In many ways, the future of space solar rests less on scientists and engineers, and more on people who decide what they want to pay for.”

Jeffe is not the only one who sees promise in this strategy. Both Japan and China have plans for launching their own space solar stations in the next 25 to 30 years. In the United States, the private company Solaren Corp. is raising money for a design and demonstration phase. It has already drawn some lucrative interest, having been awarded a contract with major electric utility provider PG&E.

None of these projects will see energy returns for the next decade or more, and the average energy user can only hope this will be soon enough. Last year, the U.S. Energy Information Administration projected that world energy consumption will grow by almost 50 percent between 2012 and 2040. Credit: Futurism

 

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7 Ways To Prolong The Life Of Deep Cycle Lead-Acid Batteries

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If you use an off-grid alternative energy system, you will need a battery bank with deep cycle batteries.

The most common deep cycle batteries used in off-grid energy systems are (deep cycle) lead-acid batteries because they’re reliable, affordable, and able to repeatedly deeply discharge and recharge.

But a lot is asked of deep cycle lead-acid batteries in off-grid energy systems. The regular deep discharging then recharging they have to perform puts a lot of stress on the batteries.

But if you take proper care of the batteries …and also do a few tips and tricks we’ll teach you in this article, you can maximize the lifespan of your deep cycle batteries.

In this article, we’ll not only show you our top 7 ways to prolong the life of your lead-acid deep cycle batteries…

We’ll also point out some of the most common mistakes we see people making when they use lead-acid deep cycle batteries in their off-grid energy system (so you don’t make the same mistakes)!

 

The Battery Bank Is The Achilles Heel Of Solar/Wind/Off-Grid Energy Systems

Before we give you our top 7 tips and tricks, we want you to know why this information is important…

  • One the most expensive parts of an off-grid energy system is the battery bank.
  • And the batteries are typically one of the first things to fail in a system.

Solar Battery Bank With Reconditioned BatteriesImproper battery care often kills the batteries in the battery bank well before their time. This forces people to buy new expensive batteries and also cripples their off-grid system until they replace the dead batteries.

So proper care is critically important so you prevent premature aging of your batteries and maximize their lifespan.

 

#1) Use High Quality Batteries

So this tip probably seems obvious, but the old adage ‘You get what you pay for’ holds true for most deep cycle batteries.

Cheap off-brand batteries from China are flooding the market right now and you want to avoid using these. They generally have a much shorter lifespan compared to quality batteries that you pay a little more for upfront.

High quality flat plate batteries can last between 10-12 years. The more expensive tubular plate batteries can even last as long as 20-25 years if maintained properly.

Paying for higher quality batteries upfront that last 10-25 years may seem expensive but it actually ends up being more expensive to buy cheap batteries …then replacing them every couple years (because they die early).

If you want to save money on your battery bank don’t buy “cheap” batteries, instead get quality used batteries and recondition them back to their original condition.

Don’t know what batteries to use? If you don’t know what kind of batteries to get for your off-grid energy system, read our article about the 3 best batteries for off-grid energy systems.

#2) Proactively Prevent Corrosion

Even if you use the most expensive, high-quality batteries in your battery bank, it won’t be of much use if the batteries aren’t cared for and corrosion or acid is on them.

Extend lifespan of lead-acid deep cycle batteriesBefore you assemble all of the components of your battery bank, make sure to individually coat the terminals, wire lugs, nuts and bolts with a non-hardening sealant.

You can also apply a thin coating of petroleum jelly to the battery terminals for some extra protection.

Lastly, seal exposed wire at a terminal lug using submersible rubber splice tape or something similar.

The reason all of this has to be done before assembly is because it ensures that all of the parts are equally protected. If you apply protective substances after you finish assembling the system, there is a good chance that dirt will get into small spaces that weren’t properly coated.

#3) Make Sure That the Battery Bank and PV Array are Correctly Sized

If you’re using a solar panel or wind power system, you should make sure that your battery bank is big enough to carry six to ten days of load.

This ensures:

  1. You’ll always have a nice back-up supply of power.
  2. And you’ll also be able to use your batteries a little more gently so you don’t have to consistently drain them.

#4) Fully Charge The Batteries Every  Week

Lead Acid Battery MaintenanceAt the very least, make sure to fully charge your batteries every week.

This reduces corrosion on the inside and ensures equalization.

#5) Keep Your Batteries at an Ideal Temperature

Because temperature extremes cause batteries to deteriorate much faster, it is important that you keep your batteries in a place where the temperature is relatively stable.

Aside from enclosed above-ground structures, you can also create a structure that is partially underground. This way the temperature in the structure will remain the same no matter what the weather is like outside.

In addition, make sure that the charge controller or inverter system has a built in temperature compensation feature. This is necessary because the charge voltage limit of a battery increases as temperature drops and decreases at temperatures increase.

#6) Don’t Install More Than Three Parallel Battery Strings

Ideally, your battery bank should only be made up of a single series of cells. The more cells that are included, the higher the chance of there being random defects. There’s also a greater chance of losing equalization, resulting in cells failing prematurely.

If you can’t stick to just a single series of cells in your battery bank, limit it to three parallel battery strings.

#7) Install a Renewable Energy System Digital Monitor

A renewable energy system monitor will help you keep track of the performance of your system (including the battery bank).

It will also help you troubleshoot any issue that comes up with your system so you can troubleshoot it before it turns into a bigger problem.

This will be particularly important if you are relying on the power from your off-grid power system and living in a remote area.

It will also help you maintain your batteries so you don’t have any surprise repairs that are costly and could have been avoided.

http://reconditionleadacidbattery.com/7-ways-prolong-life-deep-cycle-lead-acid-batteries/

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The Four Essentials Of Off Grid Solar

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off-grid-solar-controller-batteries-inverter

An off-grid solar (photo-voltaic) electric power system is an ideal prep for modern survival in that it can partially or totally relinquish you from dependence upon other systems, which themselves are vulnerable to disruption or breakdown.

Off-grid systems also enable the ability to live away from the mainstream, which opens the door to properties which may be more affordable than others which require connectivity to public utility systems.

Even if living in suburbia, installing an off-grid system side-by-side with the existing electrical system could provide you with a completely separate electrical circuit (separate outlets, etc… however you design it – unless you ‘grid-tie’), and reduce your dependency on the grid as well as provide a back-up means of electrical power during a grid outage or disaster situation.

Although there is much more to know regarding the proper design and construction of an off-grid solar power system, the following basic essential elements should give you a basic summary of the main components involved.

A typical off-grid system and can be split up into four sections, each with their own function and purpose as listed here.

1. Photovoltaic Solar Panels

2. Charge Controller

3. Battery Bank

4. DC to AC Inverter

 

PV PHOTOVOLTAIC SOLAR PANELS

The PV (PhotoVoltaic) solar panel is where it all begins. A typical solar panel is made up of an array of many small individual solar cells, made of crystalline silicone, each connected together to provide a usable amount of total power. Sunlight (photons) strike the crystalline silicone wafers, which convert that energy into electricity.

Today’s typical residential solar panel may contain enough individual cells to produce about 250 watts (although there are lots of different sizes). The more solar panels, the more power you get. While a number of years ago this panel would have cost $4 per watt, nowadays the panels are commonly priced in the vicinity of $1/watt, more or less.

To calculate the number of solar panels required (which will vary widely depending on one’s needs,) it’s all about the term ‘watts’. A ‘watt’ is a unit of power.

First you need to determine the wattage of an individual appliance or device that you would like to power, and multiply it’s wattage by the number of hours per day that the appliance or device may be ‘on’. The result is a unit of energy which is required to power that device – power multiplied by time. You do this for each device and add them all up to get a total number.

For example you might want enough power to run a refrigerator, maybe a chest freezer, a number of lights, along with enough left-over energy to occasionally run a washing machine, kitchen appliance, radio or TV, and a computer, etc.

Refrigerator

A refrigerator’s internal compressor will cycle on and off throughout the day, and may realistically be ‘running’ about half the time during any given day. If your refrigerator consumes 100 watts when it’s ‘on’, you would calculate the power consumption requirement as follows:

100 watts  x  12 hours  =  1,200 watts per day, also known as 1.2 kWh, or 1.2 kilowatt hours, which is also the same as consuming 1,200 watts in one hour.

You can determine how many watts that your devices are consuming by temporarily plugging them into one of these, which is what I currently use for testing:

Electricity Usage Monitor

Chest Freezer

(60 watts  x  12 hours  =  720 watts per day)

Light Bulbs (Energy Efficient CFL)

(14 watts  x  6 bulbs  x  6 hours  =  500 watts per day)

This very simple example of operating a fridge, chest freezer and a half-dozen light bulbs adds up to 2,400 watts of energy consumed in a given day, or 2.4 kWh.

Perhaps we add 600 watts as ‘extra’, which brings us to 3,000 watts of energy, or 3 kWh.

Now you need to discover the worst case scenario regarding the number of hours of ‘good’ direct sunlight that you might get per day in your geographical location.

Lets say the worst case scenario for acquiring sunlight is during the middle of winter, and depending on your geo location – with 4 hours of good sunlight to provide electrical charging capability through your solar panels. This means that during those 4 hours, you will need to come up with 3,000 watts of energy.

3,000 (watts) divided by 4 (hours of good sunlight) equals 750 watts of solar panel power capacity to absorb and convert 4 hours of solar energy into 3 kWh of electricity.

This means that you will need three 250 watt panels.

Well, not exactly – this calculation is based on your panels tracking the sun and angled exactly right – all the time in order to optimize the solar energy conversion. Let’s say you don’t have a ‘tracker’ and your panels are simply installed on the roof at some optimum fixed angle. In this example you may actually need 6 panels to be assured to gather enough energy…

A significant factor in an overall design is to include margin of safety (excess) so that you don’t run short of energy. You need to factor in your location, cloudy days, and other considerations. But this is just a very basic overview, so we’ll skip all that for now…

 

CHARGE CONTROLLER

The charge controller is the electronic device that is between the solar panel array and the battery bank (the batteries store the energy).

The charge controller provides a proper amount (and technique) of electrical charge to the battery bank.

It is intelligent in that it automatically adjusts depending upon the load on the system, and the state-of-charge of the batteries – versus the amount of available power from the solar panels at any given moment (at least the better ones do this).

A good charge controller will also perform maintenance functions on your batteries to help keep them in optimum condition and to prolong their life. The charge controller is an essential component in the overall system.

 

BATTERY BANK

The battery bank is unique to the off-grid system (as opposed to a ‘grid-tie’ system which doesn’t use them).

Since you do not consume all of your daily energy requirements during only daylight hours, an off-grid system will store the energy that is collected during daylight into a bank of batteries to be used when the solar panels are no longer in the sunlight.

(With a grid-tie system, and during a grid power outage, you will not have electricity when there’s no sunlight)

The batteries used in solar power systems are manufactured uniquely, and are designed for ‘deep-cycle’ conditions with a rugged and heavy duty internal design.

An additional consideration for the overall solar power system is the number of backup days that you may want to have energy in reserve – during times when the sun is covered by clouds during periods of bad weather.

It is important to have a few days reserve energy, which means having more batteries to store that energy.

These batteries are very heavy; they require specific cabling and inter-connectivity depending on system design; there are special considerations for their placement (environmental temperature, proper exhaust – depending on battery type, and safety).

 

DC to AC INVERTER

The Inverter is located at the last stage of the solar power system. It’s job is to convert the DC (direct current) energy from your battery bank into AC (alternating current) energy that is used in the typical home.

‘DC’ refers to direct current, and ‘AC’ refers to alternating current. ‘AC’ is what is generated in electrical utility power plants and sent to homes to power appliances, etc.

You will need this inverter unless you have special appliances and lighting to operate on DC power.

Today’s modern inverters can be very efficient, so hardly any power is lost during the conversion process assuming you’ve purchased a quality unit.

There are cheap inverters out there which I caution against for several reasons, including the ability to handle short-term high current loads from motors and compressors starting up (refrigerators and freezers for example). Better inverters provide pure sine wave AC power and will not damage your appliances (or electronics).

 

http://modernsurvivalblog.com/alternative-energy/the-four-essentials-of-off-grid-solar/amp/

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Solar Power has huge potential in Africa -Adnan Amin

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“Power revolution” is coming to Africa through solar power comparable in scale and importance to the rapid surge in mobile phone use on the continent two decades ago, predicts the head of the International Renewable Energy Agency.ABU DHABI (Thomson Reuters Foundation)

Fast-dropping costs for solar power, combined with plenty of sun and a huge need for electricity on a continent where many are still without it, means solar has huge potential in Africa, said Adnan Amin, the director general of IRENA.

“Africa’s solar potential is enormous,” he said in an interview with the Thomson Reuters Foundation. The continent gets 117 percent more sunshine than Germany, which today has the highest installed solar power capacity, he said.

“It has never been more possible and less expensive for Africa to realize this potential,” he said.

Both grid-connected solar power and off-grid solar energy now offer “cost-competitive means to meet rising energy needs and bring electricity to the 600 million Africans who currently lack access”, Amin said.

Innovations – including better transmission and storage for solar power, and new payment systems – also mean using more solar power in Africa could boost economies and create jobs for millions of people across the continent, he said.

“Africa’s vast solar potential presents a huge opportunity for people to engage in a range of economic activities such as irrigation and agro-processing, and it is already beginning to happen,” said the Nairobi- born Amin.

MORE INNOVATION, LESS COST

Solar can have high upfront costs, compared to traditional fuels, but a number of technological and financing advances – such as pay-as-you-go solar, with payments made by mobile phone – are helping deal with that problem, he said.

Even the higher initial costs are coming down, he said, with solar panel prices expected to continue falling. The price of producing power from solar mini-grids – installations unconnected to larger national grid systems – is expected to fall by at least 60 percent over the next two decades.

“The rapid rise of pay-as-you-go solar home systems and integration with mobile payment technology is an example of the speed of innovation that is taking place. In East Africa alone, over 450,000 such systems have been deployed,” he said.

IRENA estimates that up to 60 million Africans already may be using off-grid renewable electricity of some kind.

RIGHT POLICY CRUCIAL

But for use of solar to dramatically expand further, countries will need sound regulatory frameworks, master plans that help draw in local investors, and a sufficient number of entrepreneurs, Amin said.

Government finance institutions will also need to help cut the risks investors face in financing large solar projects in order to keep interest rates for loans low, he said.

That view is shared by Snehar Shah, director of solar company Azuri East Africa, which has sold over 100,000 solar home systems in East Africa over the last four years.

He believes the majority of people in East Africa living away from national power grids will need to rely on solar for energy – and that emerging innovations will persuade them to do that.

“Just as landline telephones once were the preserve of elites in Africa but mobile telephones are now owned by nearly everyone, solar power presents much larger possibilities for expansion than grid power,” Shah said.

“Solar is cost effective when compared to the cost of getting connected to grid electricity in Africa and it is stable, ensuring that outages, which are a daily thing with grid (power), are non-existent,” he said.

Reliability “is one thing that is attracting people to solar”, he said.

Solar firms such as Azuri not only offer solar panels but also accessories to make the most of that power, such as efficient LED lights, televisions, torches, phone chargers and radios, Shah said. The company also provides finance for customers, cutting out the need to seek separate bank loans.

Crafting policies to support the growth of solar power will be key for continued uptake of it, said Pavel Oimeke, director of renewable energy for the Kenya Energy Regulatory Commission.

Some African countries have lowered or removed duties on the import of solar equipment and appliances, while others – such as Kenya – have set attractive feed-in tariffs for renewable energy to attract investment in solar power plants   Written by aMaina Waruru

 

 

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This South American giant of hydropower is smashing records

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http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=3000593474

South America’s titan of hydropower  

Situated on the Parana River, the Itaipu dam straddles the border between Brazil and Paraguay.

Here, Sustainable Energy takes a look at this icon of hydropower, assessing the impact it has on the countries it supplies energy to.

In its first year of operation Itaipu produced 276,529 megawatt hours of power. In 2016, that figure hit 103,098,366 megawatt hours, a world record for annual generation.

In terms of scale, Itaipu is vast. The dam’s length – when taking into account the Hernandarias dike – is 7,919 meters, while its maximum height hits 196 meters.

A staggering 12.3 million cubic meters of concrete were used in its construction, with the steel and iron used enough to build 380 Eiffel Towers.

“Our generating units are 700 megawatts each,” Juliano Portela, an engineer at Itaipu Binacional, told CNBC’s Sustainable Energy. “We have 20 generating units installed, which comprises a total of 14,000 megawatts,” he added.

Nilton Sergio Ramos Quoirin | Moment | Getty Images

Energy

The energy impact of Itaipu has been significant. According to Itaipu Binacional, the facility generates roughly 17 percent of the energy used in Brazil and 76 percent of the energy consumed in Paraguay.

It frequently surpasses expectations, according to Portela. “We have a project number of generating a production of 75 terawatt hours per year, but this number is surpassed year after year: in the last year we produced 103 terawatt hours.”

Going forward

The plant, Itaipu Binacional say, is now “at the limit of its physical capacity and at the peak of production.”

Plans to upgrade the generating units are underway, with investment of $500 million eyed. Among other things, preventive maintenance and the updating of technology will be looked at.

“The idea is to keep the plant competitive until the next century,” the facility’s Jorge Samek said at the beginning of January this year.

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Facebook selects Solar Energy to power data centre!

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Solar energy is a resource that is not only sustainable for energy consumption, it is indefinitely renewable (at least until the sun runs out in billions of years)

 Facebook has chosen New Mexico-based renewable energy firm Affordable Solar to build 30MW of solar PV for its ‘Facebook Data Center’ in Los Lunas.

The projects will use ground-mount, single-axis trackers from Array Technologies. Credit: Array technologies

Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM), which has already invested nearly US$270 million in solar farms across the state, awarded the US$37 million EPC contract to Affordable Solar. Construction on the first of three 10MW sites will start in mid-2017.

The projects will use ground-mount, single-axis trackers from Array Technologies, a tracker specialist, which is also based in New Mexico. They will contain 115,000 solar panels and create 40 permanent jobs and 120 construction jobs.

Kevin Bassalleck, president of Affordable Solar, said: “It’s a continuation of the working relationship we’ve established with PNM over many years, and we’re grateful to have been provided this new opportunity as they deploy more utility-scale solar.”

In a similar move, last Month, another tech giant Apple partnered Nevada utility NV Energy with plans to use solar to power its Reno data cente. Microsoft has also committed to running its data centres on 50% clean energy sources by 2018. Source; Tom Kenning

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Monitor & communicate with solar power systems wherever you are!

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When it comes to installing solar power systems, AWPS Renewable Energy Ltd the Nigeria’s #1 provider of premium solar power  is one company Nigerians can trust for quality solar power installations.

Our customers testifies of our quality service and  new customers continues to join the ever winning solar family  daily based on our strong customer relationships.

One of the reasons AWPS Renewable Energy Ltd is known for quality service is because we use European Inverters, charge controllers, and US batteries.  We don’t only install solar power systems  that will run  24/7, But we make you communicate and monitor your your solar power systems  wherever you are using a simple browser or Android Tablet. The

Conext ComBox does this magic for any solar power systems we install.

The Conext Combox

The Conext ComBox is a powerful communications and monitoring device for installers and users of Conext solar power  systems.

Conext Combox features an integrated web server, enabling graphical displays of system daily, monthly  usage report and lifetime energy data to be viewed using a simple web browser or Android tablet device.

 Installers can change or configure the settings of Conext devices through the user-interface on the ComBox and respond to system email alerts promptly.

A user-configurable data logger and integrated FTP server provides the system owner with powerful analytics tool for data download and analysis. Modbus interface on the ComBox links Conext devices with third party systems through RS-485 or Ethernet ports.

For large multi-cluster systems, the ComBox can be setup in a master-slave configuration. Conext ComBox easily connects with Conext Insight to enable you to remotely monitor a portfolio of sites from any internet connected device like a laptop or a tablet.

The use of Conext Combox  for our installations is one of the reasons why we standout.

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Simple steps towards an energy efficient home.

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 In the past couple of years, almost every major state and city in Nigeria has witnessed an increase in the price of electricity. In some cases, this increase has been as high as 30% compared to just 2011 prices.

The other challenge faced is  reliability of power supply. Frequent power outages in many parts of the country have forced users, particularly home users, to install solar power energy for homes and businesses.

Diesel generators have their own set of challenges, such as a high cost of buy, operations and maintenance. The increase in the price of diesel in recent months has also led to a large increase in the cost of electricity produced by these generators. There are some bright spots, however, when we talk about energy for residential homes.

Before going to the city or the community, here are 10 easy ways to be more energy efficient, right inside our home:

1. Programmed home thermostats

Programming your home thermostat is one of the easiest ways to save energy, money, and help fight global warming. C-Bus thermostats can be easily set to act in a power saving mode. Heading off to work? Simply press the “leaving home” scene on your keypad or touch screen to turn off all the lights and cut your heating or cooling usage. Placing the fan unit under a tree saves 10% more energy than putting out in the sun. If you raise your thermostat setting by only two degrees and use your ceiling fan, you can lower your cooling costs by up to 14 percent.

2. Change your light bulbs

The most common ways to cut energy in lighting is using energy-saving incandescent, CFL bulbs and LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes). Energy saving incandescent or halogen lamps save about 25% energy. Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs) save up to 75% energy and come in warmer colors and diffuse filters as well, to go along with the home’s ambient and focus lighting design. CFLs typically start paying for themselves in 9 months and then save you money after that. One thing to remember is that CFLs contain mercury and the mercury needs to be recycled to prevent toxins from leaking. The light emitting diode (LED) are a type of solid-state lighting — semiconductors that convert electricity into light. Although once known mainly for indicator and traffic lights, LEDs are today a very rapidly developing energy-efficient technology.

3. Minimum 3-star rated ACs, refrigerator, geysers, etc.

A three-star rated AC can cut energy consumption by about 20% in a house. Similarly, a five-star rated AC can cut energy consumption by about 30%. Any star-energy rated gadget or equipment can produce some significant power savings. Five-star ACs consumes lowest energy.

4. Use of blinds that have louvers or fins for windows

Blinds bring diffused light and cut glare and heat which is present in direct light. Automated blinds also change their direction depending on the time of the day and provide greatest light. Blinds or louvers are best to show the sun’s heat back out. Light-colored woven or translucent shades are acceptable, but may not control glare under bright summer conditions.

5. Painting of roof with reflective paint

Painting the roof with reflective paint or putting white tiles can cut the heat flow into the building from the roof. This would decrease the energy consumed by ACs. Cool roof leads to reduced building heat-gain, as a white or reflective roof typically increases only 5–14 °C above ambient temperature during the day, it also saves up to 15% of the annual air-conditioning energy use of a single-story building.

6. Use of solar power instead of generators

Solar power is more energy efficient than generators. At places where electricity load need is low, or frequency and duration of power failure is low solar power can easily replace generators. Inverters are extremely efficient, compared to generators, and only consume DC power in direct relation to the amount of power they put out. Another major benefit is that they are almost silent compared to generators

7. Use of gas instead of electricity for cooking

Every unit of electricity which is saved results in less generation of at least 3 units of electricity. When we use gas for heating we are effectively reducing the load on our electrical grid. Gas cooking stoves create less overall heat than electric stoves. The heat is much more controllable on gas cooking stoves. The heat change is immediate and precise. Also, the oven for gas cooking stoves heats up quicker than the oven used for electric stoves.

8. Save water

Using less water will lower your water bill. And when you use less hot water, you’ll also see savings in your gas bill, or your electric bill if you have an electric water heater. Check all faucets, pipes and toilets for leaks. Install water saving shower heads and ultra-low-flush toilets.

 

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