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PROJECT PROPOSAL

Design of a single phase inverter for a stand-alone PV


system

Group members
1) UWINEZA Albertine
2) SAFARI E. Kevin
3) RUTEMBESA Guy
Conteh
I.0 Introduction
Rwanda like most of African developing countries faces a problem of insufficient electrical energy
access to its population [1]. In Rwanda, electricity is generated and distributed supplied by
government owned company REG (Rwanda Energy Group) and its two subsidiaries the EDCL
(Energy Development Corporation Limited) and the EUCL (Energy Utility Corporation Limited).
It is generated from many sources that include hydro, thermal, solar and geo-thermal but hydro-
electricity contributes the largest part as shown in Table 1.
Table.1 Exploited Sources in Rwanda, 2019

Source of Energy Percentage in


National grid
Hydrological sources 46.4
Diesel 26.76
6.64
Peat
13.89
Methane gas
5.41
Solar (on-grid and off-grid)
0.9
Imported from DRC and Uganda
Source : REG website
The information in the table 1 is explained as well in the pie chart below to visualize the percentage
of each source of energy.

Energy Sources in Rwanda


Solar Imported from DRC and
5% Uganda
1%
Peat
7%
Methane gas
14% Hydrological
sources
46%
Diesel
27%

Hydrological sources
Diesel
Methane gas
Peat
Solar
From the data given thus we observe first that electricity that is generated is still scarce since we
still import a percentage from our neighboring countries and therefore to solar energy can be an
answer since it is what contributes the largest percentage to off-grid electricity.

Access to electricity in 2019


Percentage of people with electricity

80
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0
Nyagatare

Bugesera

Burera
Gasabo

Muhanga

Ngorero
Musanze

Rwamagana

Kamonyi
Huye

Rutsiro
Ngoma

Kirehe

Nyamagabe

Gisagara
Gicumbi

Gakenke
Nyarugenge

Gatsibo

Nyanza
Rubavu

Rusizi

Nyabihu

Ruhango
Karongi
Kayonza

Rulindo
kicukiiro

Name of District

As of January 2019, electricity access is 49.6% of Rwandan households according to REG. This
consists of 36% connected to the national grid and 13.6% off-grid connected. Most of the
percentage though that have access to this electricity are in the city. In Rural areas only a few
people have access to electricity as shown in a recent census undertake by REG.

To combat this low access to electricity in Rural areas therefore, the government of Rwanda has
encouraged companies to invest in off-grid Renewable energy solutions especially solar energy. It
is in this way that many internationally owned companies that provide off-grid solar electricity
have come to Rwanda and undertaken the responsibility of providing off-grid solar electricity.
These companies include Mobisol, Bbox, Zola and Ignite Power.
These companies provide electricity by use of solar PV panels, a DC booster and a battery. This
gives DC electricity but which can light only a few domestic appliances since most domestic
appliances use AC. In order for this to work therefore, the people have to buy the company
appliances which use e.g. Televisions, Radios, lights. This makes it expensive whereby a house
that has a television, a radio and electric has to pay money that ranges from (600,000Rwf to
800,000Rwf). This creates a need for cheap and cost-efficient inverters on the market
Figure: showing solar DC electricity supply to a house in Kinazi village

Also our country as all other African countries is trying to put in place a smart-grid system of
electricity, this therefore creates a gap for inverters because they allow synchronization of the off-
grid electricity to the national grid. Inverters are also expensive on the market. This and the above
mentioned factors therefore is what influenced the research into developing a home grown solution
of implementing a single phase stand alone and cost-efficient inverter. [2]

I.1. OBJECTIVES
 The general objective of this project is to design a less cost effective single phase inverter
since off grid solar electricity is expensive due to this system is provided by international
owned companies then we are proposing in terms of cost and high efficiency to design a
less cost effective single phase inverter to generate electricity for households and public
applications services.
 The specific objectives of this project
 Cost comparison of inverters on Rwandan market
 System modelling and simulation of the project
 Reducing the cost of electricity bill
 to increase electricity access in Rwanda through off-grid technologies and facilitate
private-sector participation in renewable off-grid electrification.
I.2 Scope
The scope of this project work is limited to the determination of optimal photovoltaic system to
generate electricity for rural areas.
The final designed system has the following limitations.
The issues of PV system stability and control will be included in this research project.
Design of Rwanda electric grid will be part of this project work.
Only software will be used for modelling and simulation of the entire system.

I.3 METHODOLOGY
Data collection
To achieve the objective, we will be using the data collection process based on single phase voltaic
system. These include the knowledge of load profile, a clear understanding of photovoltaic system
configurations, study of component behavior as well as cost, modelling and simulation of the solar
home system as well as the stand-alone solar system, selection of optimum system referring to the
simulation results and performance analysis between the proposed individual solar home system
and the stand-alone system for the village.[5]
Questionnaires and interviews
The purpose of understanding the households interview using the questionnaires is to get detailed
information regarding the challenges that they meet while they are using solar system. This process
also included, gathering information on the various strategies set in place by individual households
as well as community as whole, on the measures can be taken to reduce difficulties of using solar
energy

I.4 EXPECTED RESULTS


We will come up with a cost-efficient inverter from home grown solution which will be able to
compete on the Rwandan market. Secondly if implemented will contribute to increasing the access
of off-grid solar electricity to the Rural areas of the country because it will be cheaper.
References

1.www.reg.com
2.www.newtimes.co.rw/news/rwanda-embraces-smart-grid-technology
3. Jeannine Uwibambe: Design of Photovoltaic System for Rural Electrification in Rwanda

4. Sean White (2015), Solar PV Engineering and installation.


5.Solar PV and Wind Energy Conversion Systems An Introduction to Theory, Modeling with
MATLAB/SIMULINK, and the Role of Soft Computing Techniques