Zenith Energy Solar PV power plant is now live and providing zero emissions energy to IGO’s Nova nickel‐copper‐cobalt operation, 360 kilometres south-east of Kalgoorlie, Australia.

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IGO and Zenith trailblaze in zero emissions energy at Nova

The Hybrid Solar PV‐Diesel power generation facility, which is built, owned and operated by Zenith, is already exceeding performance targets for power output and energy efficiency, delivering IGO savings in diesel consumption of approximately 6,500 litres per day.

Zenith Energy’s Managing Director, Hamish Moffat said the proprietary hybrid system developed by the Company is able to seamlessly manage the fluctuations in solar PV energy production to provide smooth, reliable power, without the need for batteries to stabilise energy delivery to Nova.

“Batteries have their place in energy systems, but they are still expensive to deploy for these applications,” explained Mr Moffat.

“Our unique, locally developed hybrid system eliminates the need for batteries and represents a major step forward in the capital cost optimisation, operating efficiency and environmental performance of Solar PV hybrid energy systems in remote locations.”

The combined 26.6MW system includes new 5.5MWp of state‐of‐the‐art PV modules, single axis tracking, inverters, and communications and control system technology.

“The system Zenith has installed also features high‐efficiency, diesel‐fuelled generators that combine with our unique control system to optimise solar and diesel power delivery,” said Mr Moffat.

“We are absolutely thrilled with the performance of the system to date, which is saving Nova in the order of 6,500 litres of diesel every day. Importantly, this is the first hybrid Solar PV‐diesel installation that has been funded on a commercial, standalone basis – without any Government subsidies.”

IGO’s Chief Operating Officer, Matt Dusci explained that IGO strives to reduce its carbon footprint.

“The implementation of new technologies with the construction of a hybrid‐solar system at Nova will enable IGO to reduce our CO2 equivalent emissions by approximately 6,500t per annum,” commented Mr Susci.

“The solar facility will also decrease our cost structure through reductions in our diesel fuel usage.”

Zenith will supply power from the Solar PV‐diesel hybrid system under an initial six‐year period, with an option for IGO to extend for a further two years.