Kenyatta University (KU) has switched on the first phase of its Sh1.7 billion solar plant. This will see the institution generate its own electricity and offload excess power onto the national grid.
The 100 kilowatt(KW) solar plant, located at KU’s main campus off Thika Road, cost an estimated Sh17 million.
The total cost of the entire 10-megawatt project is estimated at sh 1.7 billion.
The extra power produced in phase two will be connected to the national grid, helping to generate extra revenue for the institution.
Speaking after commissioning the plant, Energy and Petroleum secretary Charles Keter said the country had received substantial funding from the French government that shall go towards achieving universal electrification by 2020.
“We have total commitments amounting to Sh50.16 billion for financing the last mile connectivity project and Sh150 billion in commitment for electrifying off-grid areas. With support of development partners, we will achieve our objective of universal electrification by 2020,” said Mr Keter.
He said Kenyans will be trained on operation of new models of solar energy that are being adopted in the country.
Urbarsolar president Arnaud Mine said the pilot plant is capable of tracking the direction of the sun thus absorbing maximum energy during the day.
The technology used to make the plant allows for installation of a software that enables easy tracking of its contribution to the national grid.