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Features 10-07-2023

3 min read

Hitachi Energy presented innovative mining solutions at Africa Energy Forum 2023 in Kenya

Pioneering technology leader Hitachi Energy attended the 25th Africa Energy Forum (AEF) from June 20-23 at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre in Nairobi, Kenya. The high-level event brought together governments, utilities, regulators, development finance institutions, commercial banks, power developers, technology providers, and related professional services.

“Electricity will be the backbone of the entire energy system. There is an accelerated shift from fossil-based to renewable power generation, with the growing electrification of the transportation, industrial and building sectors. To manage this, digital and energy platforms are needed for the enormous power-system energy transition challenges of increased complexity and additional capacity requirements,” said Stuart Michie, Head of Sales and Marketing for Southern Africa, Hitachi Energy.

Kenya’s capital and commercial center, Nairobi, has one of the most dynamic economies in Central and East Africa. It has a growing population and is the headquarters of several prominent African and international companies and organizations.

Hitachi Energy showcased its latest solutions to managing the energy transition in key economic sectors, such as the mining industry, at the AEF 2023. Michie delivered a presentation on the impact of energy transition in the mining industry.

Mines are grappling with energy security due to unreliable power generation. To address global climate change, there is a need to shift away from fossil fuels and look for renewable sources. Hitachi Energy is a leader at managing electrical energy with its lineup of effective energy management solutions for the mining industry.

A major opportunity for mines in this new ‘smart energy’ era is to migrate to an integrated electricity mix. Most mines are isolated, so on-site energy management is critical to maintaining power and productivity. The initial direction to transition away from fossil fuels is a hybrid scenario whereby mines rely less on diesel and more on renewable sources for power generation. From a hybrid model, mines can become self-sufficient by transitioning to grid-connected microgrids for power generation.

Energy management, therefore, becomes critical as grid-provided power is less of an option. Enabling energy management and optimization for enhanced reliability and resiliency can be achieved in several ways, but mine operators that create their grids are better positioned to reap the benefits of system flexibility that affords the greatest potential to reduce CO2 emissions.

Hitachi Energy has a long history in the energy sector in Kenya, assisting the country’s Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) utility to upgrade and expand Nairobi’s power transmission and distribution network. For example, it has supplied solutions like a SCADA/EMS System (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition/Energy Management System).

On the renewables side, it has supplied and installed a PowerStore flywheel-based microgrid stabilization solution for the Marsabit wind farm in northern Kenya for client Socabelec East Africa. The renewable energy sector in Kenya is among the most active in Africa, with the country having some of the continent’s most abundant and consistent wind resources.

Clean energy generation, network infrastructure, and electrification of end-use sectors are crucial to decarbonization strategies. Together with its customers and partners, Hitachi Energy is committed to accelerating the energy transition towards a carbon-neutral energy system. We have placed sustainability at the heart of our purpose. 

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