PERTH (miningweekly.com) – Graphite miner Syrah Resources has taken a final investment decision for the installation of a solar and battery hybrid power system for its Balama project, in Mozambique.
Syrah at the end of 2020 struck a memorandum of understanding with Solar Century Africa over an energy solution for the Balama project, and the company selected a 11.25 MW solar photovoltaic installation, combined with a 8.5 MW/MWh battery energy storage system, which will be integrated with Balama’s existing diesel power generation plant.
The system will be delivered under a build-own-operate-transfer (BOOT) arrangement, comprising a ten-year operating lease and an operating and maintenance contract with a Mozambique project company, which will be wholly owned by project financier CrossBoundary Energy (CBE).
The solar battery system will be transferred to Syrah at nil cost at the end of the ten-year BOOT term.
Syrah said on Wednesday that the solar battery system is scheduled to be commissioned and operating before the end of the March quarter next year.
The project is expected to provide 35% of Balama’s site power and will reduce diesel consumed for power generation by some 35%. During peak daylight times, the system will be able to supply all of Balama’s power requirements.
“The installation of a large-scale solar and battery hybrid power system is expected to reduce operating costs at Balama and further strengthens the environmental and social governance credentials of Balama’s natural graphite products,” said MD and CEO Shaun Verner.
“This project represents an initial step in reducing the global warming potential of Balama and the Vidalia active anode material facility in the US.”
The solar battery system is expected to derive C1 cost savings of $8/t of graphite, at a 15 000 t/m production rate.