Solar in Argentina

Installed capacity16MW

The Argentinian WEC Member Committee reports that the country’s solar resource potential has been determined by a number of studies, in particular the ‘Atlas solar de la República Argentina’ by H. Grossi Gallegos and R. Righini, which includes maps of the monthly spacial distribution of average solar irradiation and of the average number of hours’ sunshine.

Up to the present, the use of PV in Argentina has been largely confined to supplying unsatisfied demand in remote areas. However, two projects that will be incorporated into the interconnected system were reported in October 2009 to be at the bidding stage: one was for a 1.2 MWp pilot PV plant in the province of San Juan, while the state-owned energy corporation ENARSA was inviting bids for 10 MWp of PV capacity and 25 MW of solar thermal.

The Proyecto de Energías Renovables en Mercados Rurales (PERMER), financed by the National Government and carried forward by the Secretaría de Energía, has as its principal objective the supply of electricity to a significant number of people who live in rural areas, and to approximately 6 000 public service establishments of all kinds (schools, emergency medical posts, police detachments, etc,) which are located out of range of energy distribution centres.

The project envisages the installation of mini-hydro stations, wind turbines, diesel plants or hybrid stations using diesel/wind, diesel/solar or solar/wind in small communities as well as the installation of PV systems and/or individual wind turbines which will afford the rural population, in addition to electricity supply, the possibility of developing small productive enterprises.

The implementation of PERMER has enabled the electrification of a large proportion of this population through solar energy (540 schools, 3 260 dwellings and 76 public services, to which can be added a further 1 049, 3 100 and 200, respectively, which are in course of execution).