9Deploying PV Services for Regional Development

Operating agents


Task 9 acted as a facilitator for large scale deployment of PV in emerging and developing regions to foster a sustainable economic and social transition process and regional development.


Task 9 had a key role within the PVPS Programme, because it was the only Task with an explicit and strong focus on developing and emerging countries. With the pertinent expertise and know-how, the members of Task 9 strived to address topics of relevance for such countries.


Through its impartial and best of class research work and active dissemination of research results Task 9 significantly contributed to this vision. By cooperating with other PVPS Tasks and national and international development partners, the outreach of Task 9 outputs was leveraged, and research activities and field work of co-operating institutions were complemented and strengthened.

Task 9 activities were organized as follows

1Subtask 1 PV in mini grids and “PV as fuel saver”

Smaller PV hybrid mini grids (<100 kW) Approach:

  • Analysis and evaluation of PV hybrid systems < 100 kW consisting of a PV- and a battery-component, with a small diesel generator (used as back-up in case the battery capacity is not sufficient)
  • Collection and analysis of the following parameters:
    •  Performance
    • Grid stability
    • Fuel consumption and cost
    • Load profile
    • Maintenance effort and cost
    • Levelised cost of energy
    • Logistical problems and organisational issues
    • Options to connect the respective system to the big (national) grid – it this is approaching
  • Expected results:
    Detailed catalogue of recommendations as part of a final evaluation report for policy makers and utilities.

PV as a fuel saver (systems >100 kW) Approach:

  • Analysis of bigger systems in the range of >100 kW typically consisting of a bigger diesel generator supplemented by a small PV-component (often not exceeding 20-25% of the overall installed capacity) but without any battery component (not necessary since with a diesel generator being the “dominant part” no storage required)
  • Analysis of the potential of PV to support electricity generation (“PV as fuel saver“)
  • Simulation of a specific system as it is and as it could be if the PV generation part is increased
  • Parameters to be analysed:
    •  Performance
    • Grid stability
    • Fuel consumption
    • Load profile
    • Maintenance effort
    • Levelised cost of energy
  • Expected results:
    Detailed catalogue of recommendations as part of a final evaluation report for policy makers and utilities including critical preconditions for system improvement, overview on existing tools, e.g. HOMER and others and a flowchart for decision making.

2Subtask 2 Deployment strategy for 100% Renewables in small island countries

Many small-island countries, e.g. Cook Islands have ambitious 100% RE targets, while many others have high targets such as 60 to 80%. In most of the countries the objective is to reduce their dependency on imported fossil fuels, in particular diesel, for electricity generation. Targets often being set by politicians, the relevant Government departments and utilities are then “left alone” with the task to identify and address all the technical and non-technical requirements to meet the target. The subtasks:

  • Collect documentary evidence of the technical and non-technical (social, economic and regulatory) issues that have been identified and addressed in small island countries that are working towards 100% RE targets
  • Compile a series of 5 case studies
  • Produce a guideline addressing the following topics: penetration level of different RE technologies, size of systems and the required land areas, energy storage, grid stability and control requirements, ownership of RE systems, Power Purchase Agreements, tariff structure, regulatory requirements, capacity building, community and social issues
  • Provide guidance for other small island countries through this guideline and the information from the case studies

3Subtask 3 Mainstreaming PV related training in national training institutions framework

Based on experience from various countries, a list has been compiled reflecting the various activities that should be undertaken providing quality PV training programs that can be part of national training frameworks. The activity is mainly related to technical level trainings. Possible case studies to be considered are: Kenya, ECOWAS countries and Senegal.

4Subtask 4 PV Development as prosumers: challenges associated to producing and self-consuming electricity from grid-tied small PV-plants in developing countries

Task 1 recently did a study on the same topic in 18 industrialised countries. The objective of the current subtask was to broaden the study to emerging and developing countries.

  • Ten countries (or cases) already having in place or intending to establish a net metering policy are selected in Asia, Africa and Middle East  and Latin America; countries to reflect problems as well as success stories and schemes of different scale
  • Conceptual phase considered important to well identify partners (e.g. ECREEE, GIZ, IRENA, ARE, CLUB ER, ASEF, etc.), understand the needs of developing countries, to define target group/s and appropriate dissemination strategy for deliverables
  • Focus on residential prosumers
  • Survey focusing on:

    • Right to self-consume
    • Revenues from self-consumed PV electricity
    • Charges to finance grid (distribution and transmission) costs
    • Value of excess electricity
    • Maximum time frame for credit compensation
    • Implementation models (who invested)
    • Geographical compensation
    • Regulatory scheme duration
    • Third-party ownership
    • Grid codes and additional taxes/fees of self-consumption
    • Other enablers of self-consumption
    • System size limitations
    • Electricity system limitations
  • Comprehensive evaluation based on analyses and comparison of different countries: identification of main hindrances, best practices etc.
  • Comparison of results with those from the former study as basis to facilitate N-S-S exchange
  • Importance of self-consumption compared to net-metering
  • Development of a prospective view on the main opportunities and challenges arising from rapid urbanization in developing countries in terms of energy production and consumption schemes.

5Subtask 5 Contribution to other groups and standardisation bodies

This subtask focused on contributing to IEC TC-82 (WG 6 and JWG 1) and safety issues within IEC62109

Task 9 Reports