LEOPARD: Micro-grid technology for a widespread use of renewable energy sources in Africa
Work Package (WP)
The LEOPARD project will be developed as LEAP-RE WP 16.
The project will take place in Benin, Senegal, France, Germany .
Lead: Université de Picardie Jules Verne (UPJV)
The LEOPARD project aims to disseminate micro-grid technology by designing, testing, and evaluating a containerized solution for renewable energy production in rural and peri-urban areas in West Africa.
Context: why is this action necessary?
The decreasing prices for solar PV and the high irradiation on the African continent demonstrate the case to develop renewable energy sources (RES) and solar PV. African countries are currently raising their commitments to RES increased use of independent power producers (IPPs) and improving their legislations to stimulate renewable energy, decentralized off-grid solutions such as mini-grids and solar home systems. However, technical, financial, and regulatory barriers are still holding back the expansion of renewables in Africa: the LEOPARD project aims to overcome these barriers by providing pragmatic technical solutions and recommendations to increase electricity access and RES penetration in West Africa.
What are the concrete actions to be implemented?
- Determine the local conditions of access to energy at the neighbourhood, village, and regional levels
- Optimize the technical and economic benefits of the system, considering the local uses and appropriations
- Analyse the conditions and impacts of the interconnection of the off-grid containerized solution in a larger microgrid and its connection to the national grid or even wider
- Define the conditions of replicability and map the areas of Benin and Senegal where the solution could be appropriate
What is the expected impact of the WP?
LEOPARD will raise awareness on stand-alone solar installations in West Africa by:
- Stimulating and enhancing collaboration between public and private partners from Europe and Africa,
- Implementing a user-centric decentralized solar production based on a container which is modular, affordable, and replicable at a large scale,
- Demonstrating the feasibility and operability of the proposed solution through in situ pilots which can be locally maintained by trained technicians.