Suntrace GmbH and BayWa r.e. renewable energy GmbH were selected to provide technical support and expertise to B2Gold Corp. for construction of a 30-MW net capacity solar battery storage project near the Fekola mine site in Mali, West Africa.
Suntrace and the BayWa AG subsidiary conducted a preliminary study earlier in 2019 to assess the viability of adding a solar battery facility to the power plant that supplies electricity to the mine site.
Following study results, B2Gold approved a $38 million budget to build the solar battery hybrid system.
The photovoltaic battery system will be integrated with an existing power plant that now runs on heavy fuel oil and diesel generators. The project will enable the Fekola mine to turn off up to three heavy fuel oil engines during the day because the 13.5-MWh battery storage will provide a buffer for fluctuations, according to a news release.
Construction is expected to start by the end of 2019 and is slated for completion in August 2020.