Solar Power in a League of its Own

SOLARWORLD Africa shines a light on solar solutions that can offer up to 20 percent higher energy yields than standard solar modules. 

July proved to be one of this year’s toughest months with yet another fuel and electricity price hike and the worst loadshedding we’ve seen in years. The electricity price hike on 1 July comes shortly after energy regulator Nersa approved a 7.47% increase earlier this year constituting a 3.49% increase for the 2022/23 year, which is separate from the 9.6% annual increase for Eskom customers that kicked in on 1 April. 

While sustainable solutions, like solar, have been put on the table as an alternative energy source, many people are still in the dark about what the country plans to do to solve this crisis. 

SOLARWORLD Africa (Pty) Ltd, a leading importer and distributor of solar products in Southern and Sub-Saharan Africa, has partnered with Meyer Burger Technology AG, a European manufacturer of high-performance solar cells and modules. Together, they are tackling the renewable energy sector to help keep the lights on with products that are designed to perform best under hot conditions and that can offer up to 20 percent higher energy yields than standard solar modules. 

For anyone considering switching to solar, Gregor Kuepper, Managing Director of SOLARWORLD Africa, shares his insights to help customers make this decision. 

SOLARWORLD Africa (Pty) Ltd has partnered with Meyer Burger Technology AG, a European manufacturer of high-performance solar cells and modules. 

High-tech and craftmanship 

“Where a module and solar cells are sourced from, and the technology they are fitted with are incredibly important. Look for high-performance heterojunction solar modules that are fitted with SmartWire Connection Technology (SWCTTM) such as the ones we supply. Ours are also designed in Switzerland and are produced in Germany, two countries where the standard of workmanship and quality is of its highest. You need to know it’s going to last.”  

Durability and profitability 

“South Africa has mostly a hot climate, and because your solar cells are going to be exposed to the sun daily, their durability will continuously be tested.”  To reap the profits from investing in solar, the yield of the solar cells must be able to therefore withstand intense heat and be able to generate more power over the same area despite high temperatures. Above average cell stability, maximum resilience and high breakage resistance are all essential.  

Consistently sustainable and extremely aesthetic 

“Solar doesn’t only help you to reduce costs, but also automatically allows you to play a huge role in curbing global warming. Therefore, the solar modules must be made with materials that offer the highest social and ecological standards along the supply chain. Look out for consciously made products without lead, which are produced using 100 % renewable energy.” 

Meyer Burger’s modules are not only designed with renewables in mind but are also extremely aesthetic and elegant in their Swiss design and are suitable for all roof shapes and sophisticated architecture. They are enhanced with proprietary heterojunction technology (HJT) to make it more efficient. 

“This is done by combining layers of silicon to create a unique cell structure that enables Meyer Burger HJT cells to absorb much more solar energy than conventional cells and for the converted electrical power to flow through the module with less resistance, even under low-light conditions, such as when it’s cloudy,” explains Kuepper.

The energy yields are even greater when the cells connect with SmartWire technology (SWCT™). The thin connecting wires reduce the shading on the solar cells and in this way the modules absorb more energy and produce electricity for longer and with more power for the same amount of roof space. SWCT™ also improves cell stability making the modules less susceptible to so-called microcracks, one of the most common reasons for energy losses in solar modules. 

“Solar is a sure way to save you money in the long run and will prevent you and your business from ever losing production time due to loadshedding – a challenge so many businesses are currently facing,” says Kuepper.

SOLARWORLD Africa was established in 1984 and has been a pioneer in the photovoltaic industry in South Africa and neighbouring countries offering outstanding product quality with premium manufacturing partners. The business boasts over 25 000 projects including South Africa’s once largest rooftop solar energy system in the agriculture sector.

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