Khi Solar One

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Khi Solar One
Khi Solar One 1200.jpg
Solar One from South
CountrySouth Africa
Coordinates28°32′14″S 21°4′39″E / 28.53722°S 21.07750°E / -28.53722; 21.07750Coordinates: 28°32′14″S 21°4′39″E / 28.53722°S 21.07750°E / -28.53722; 21.07750
Construction beganNovember 2012
Commission dateFebruary 2016
Owner(s)Khi Solar One Pty. Ltd
Solar field
CSP technologySolar power tower
Total collector area57.68 hectares (143 acres)
Site area140 hectares (346 acres)
Power generation
Units operational1
Nameplate capacity50 MW
Storage capacity2 hours
Annual net output180 GW·h (planned)

Khi Solar One (KSO) is a solar power tower solar thermal power plant, located in the Northern Cape Region of South Africa. Khi Solar One is 50 megawatts (MW), and is the first solar tower plant in Africa.[1] It covers an area of 140 hectares (346 acres).

Abengoa claim it is the first thermal solar tower plant in Africa and the first tower plant to achieve 24 hours of operation with solar energy only.[2]

The KSO is an evolution of the PS10 and PS20 projects, operating since 2007 and 2009 respectively in Spain. KSO solar field is made of more than 4,000 heliostats, totaling up to 576,800 m2 (6,209,000 sq ft) of mirror surface, focusing solar energy on a boiler located on top a centralized 205-metre-high (673 ft) tower. KSO uses a superheated steam cycle that should be able to reach a maximum operating temperature of 530 °C. Accumulated saturated steam is also used to provide up to two hours of thermal storage at the plant. KSO condenser is cooled with a dry cooling system, a natural draft condenser that uses towers to distribute air across fin blades in order to dissipate heat.[3]

The project has been developed by the Spanish company Abengoa, and the project was financed with help from Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and community group, Khi Community Trust.


In November 2014, a crane collapse on site during construction killed two and injured seven. The accident was largely responsible for the project having commercial operation fourteen months later than scheduled.[4][5]


Abengoa Bankruptcy[edit]

In November 2015, Abengoa started insolvency proceedings.[6] Khi Solar One is one of the assets which Abengoa could be looking to sell.[7]

On 27 December 2016, Abengoa received a “Provisional Acceptance Certificate”, officially handing the plant to its owner Khi Solar One Pty Ltd. Abengoa has a 51% stake, Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has a 29% stake and Khi Community Trust has a 20% stake in that society. Abengoa will take on the operation and maintenance of the plant. The plant output is sold to grid operator Eskom under a 20-year PPA (Power Purchase Agreement).[8]

Khi Solar One demonstrated in early 2016, up to 24 consecutive hours of operation.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ KSO in South Africa
  2. ^ "Abengoa lauds 24-hour operation of S African solar tower - SeeNews Renewables". Retrieved 2016-05-25.
  3. ^ Baring the secrets of Khi Solar One
  4. ^ CSP-World (2014-11-04). "Two killed and 7 injured in an accident at Abengoa's CSP plant under construction in South Africa". CSP-World. Retrieved 2016-05-25.
  5. ^ Magcaba, Sbonokuhle. "Two dead and four critical in Upington crane collapse". Retrieved 2016-05-25.
  6. ^ "UPDATE 3-Spain's Abengoa starts insolvency proceedings, shares dive". Reuters. 2015-11-25. Retrieved 2016-05-25.
  7. ^ "The state of renewable energy in SA". CityPress. Retrieved 2016-05-25.
  8. ^ a b Tsanova, Tsvetomira (27 December 2017). "Abengoa hands over 50-MW CSP plant in S Africa". Renewables Now. Retrieved 6 February 2017.