HYBRID WIND AND SOLAR POWER SYSTEM WITH SERVICE LINE

One of the key needs for socio-economic development in the developing countries is energy. Energy is the backbone of the economy and lack of it can have devastating effects on the economic and social development of a country. In Kenya, the main source of electricity has heavily relied on methods of electricity production which are highly dependent on prevailing climatic conditions, the main source being hydropower. Over reliance on this power generation technique has led to serious nation-wide power blackouts in the years when the country has suffered drought.

Thanks to changing perceptions and improved awareness both in the public and private sectors, and coupled with technological advancements, renewable forms of energy have slowly but steadily been integrated into the country’s energy mix. This has had positive effects such as creating employment opportunities, reducing the country’s carbon footprint among other benefits.

This paper takes an in-depth look into the renewable energy systems in the country, paying attention to the wind power systems and the solar or PV power systems. We take a look at how these two systems can be integrated to develop hybrid wind-solar power systems, a process we shall refer to as hybridization. Hybrid energy system is a good solution to providing power in rural areas where grid connection is not a viable option, or in instances where the grid is available but there is a need to supplement it. A hybrid power system is one that utilizes more than one source of power production. In this paper, I discuss the selection of site for a hybrid power plant, the layout of the plant, sizing of the components, economic viability and installation of the plant with connection to the grid.