Renewable Electricity Supply for Nigeria

Plenty of oil, but little electricity. Nigeria may be rich in raw materials, however, electricity supply leaves much to be desired. SMA supports the energy transition in Nigeria’s commercial and rural energy supply with a range of intelligent solar solutions and local training programs. Solar micro- and stand-alone grids ensure sustainable economic development in this Sunbelt nation.

With a population of around 200 million, Nigeria is the most populous country and the largest national economy on the African continent. Unfortunately, this Central West African state also tops the table when it comes to power outages — that is, if a utility grid connection is available at all. Strong grid fluctuations and long power outages are part of everyday life. The transmission and distribution grids in this developing country are in extremely poor condition and the power plants are inefficient. The current installed electricity generation output is only around 12 GW (in Germany, by comparison, around 200 GW of power plant output went on-grid in Germany in 2017). And to make matters worse, more than half the population currently has no access at all to the utility grid.

The future belongs to micro- and stand-alone grids

Factories and workshops often get by with diesel generators, with all the soot and noise that these entail. Not only is this bad for air quality and the quality of life in Nigeria, but small companies in particular often cannot afford to maintain the generators. A functioning electricity supply is indispensable for Nigeria’s economic development.

The World Bank has now promised a loan of $350 million to the Nigerian government for the construction of 3 GW of solar-based micro- and off-grid systems. Located inside the world’s Sunbelt region, Nigeria has an almost inexhaustible potential for solar energy.

Regular local training programs

Giannis Goumas

SMA supports the ambitious expansion targets of 30 GW by 2030 by offering solutions for a sustainable energy supply in rural and urban areas. “Rural electrification and commercial self-consumption using a battery-storage system are currently the main priorities here,” said Guluma Megersa from SMA Sunbelt. He has just returned from a training program on board exchange, where SMA Service provides local training for selected installers. “If local installers can independently inspect defective inverter assemblies and replace them on-site if needed, this will reduce downtime and service costs,” explained SMA Service trainer Giannis Goumas.


Solar Training: Board Exchange (Nigeria)


Guluma Megersa

“Our robust devices are ideally suited to the market because they can withstand the strong fluctuations on the local utility grid and generate clean electricity during the day,” said Guluma. “The participants were really excited by the potential.” Thanks to the provision of reactive power during the night (Q @ Night), SMA inverters counteract voltage fluctuations at the point of interconnection. In addition, the grid-forming SMA battery inverters enable a stable solar electricity supply in the event of power outages in micro-grids and off-grid regions.

“At the beginning, we had to educate a lot of people on the potential of solar electricity,” said Guluma. “After all, many private and institutional decision-makers are aware only of solar street lighting or very small Pico Solar systems with an output of less than 200 W, which, in most cases, are not professionally installed and have to be replaced after a few years.”

As part of regular training programs, SMA Sunbelt teaches project developers and local electrification authorities (Rural Electrification Agency, Ministry of Power, etc.) how to design off-grid and hybrid systems.

Jens Birkholz

More specialized training programs — for example, on system monitoring and control — are also provided if necessary. “Know-how transfer and the provision of market-specific training programs for our partners in the Sunbelt region are core elements of our strategy,” said Jens Birkholz, Sales Manager at SMA Sunbelt. “The training program offered by our Solar Academy at SMA Headquarters is doing groundbreaking work here. However, for some clients, especially those in developing countries, it can be difficult to obtain visas so that they can attend training programs in Germany. This is why, in collaboration with the Solar Academy, we are bringing these training programs to the target regions themselves. The response to the new board exchange training program has been great, and we have received numerous requests for training programs in other countries. We are currently in the process of arranging these.”



Turnkey solar solutions from a single source

SMA Sunbelt Energy GmbH is a 100% subsidiary of SMA Solar Technology AG. It was founded in 2014 with the aim of realising off-grid, hybrid and battery-based PV projects. SMA Sunbelt concentrates on regions in the Earth’s sunbelt: Africa, Central America and the Caribbean, the Middle East, Southeast Asia and the Pacific region.

Sunbelt supplies the complete SMA Off-Grid portfolio and offers associated services for the Off-Grid segment. In the PV hybrid and storage segment, SMA Sunbelt is a specialist for international project development and EPCM (Engineering, Procurement, Construction Management; EPCM is an extended form of project management and includes project and construction management in addition to detailed planning, creation and construction). Sunbelt customers benefit from more than 30 years of SMA know-how in the field of PV hybrid solutions. To receive everything from a single source — inverters, batteries, PV modules and accessories — is a major advantage for complex import regulations.

Are you an electrically skilled person or solar technology specialist with local training requirements? If so, please contact:

Please find the complete offer in the SMA Solar Academy training program.

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This article was published in 2019. As we are constantly developing our solutions, there may be newer or additional options for the tips and techniques in this article.

  1. Ethieen Ohanuka
    Ethieen Ohanuka says:

    My name is Ethieen, please can i have the contact details of where and how i can purchase a product in Nigeria.

  2. Chizoba Nzeakor
    Chizoba Nzeakor says:

    I will like to be a distributor of your product here in Nigeria. Let’s change the plenty of oil and little electricity headline, with clean energy and constant power supply.

    • Christiane Keim
      Christiane Keim says:

      Hello Chizoba,

      Sorry for the delay in getting back to you.
      We will contact you via Mail regarding your inquiry.

      Sunny regards

  3. Darlington
    Darlington says:

    Hello, I plan to use your equipment for a power system in an estate with 227 residence located
    in Lagos, Nigeria.
    I need support in cross-examining my design and suggestions if possible in using your TRIPOWER 60 STORAGE system.

  4. Owolabi Adebayo Stephen
    Owolabi Adebayo Stephen says:

    When is the next training session in Nigeria, Am interested in the use of SMA inverter

  5. Agbuna Matthew
    Agbuna Matthew says:

    I am very happy to have been part of this first of a kind training in Africa from SMA, Renewable Energy is transforming the electricity sector of Nigeria soonest, and also create job opportunity. Thanks to SMA.

    • Maria Simone Aydin
      Maria Simone Aydin says:

      Hi Agbuna,

      thank you very much! It’s an honor to hear that! 🙂

      sunny greetings from Germany

      • Ayoyimika
        Ayoyimika says:

        Hello, please how can I be part of this training. I would so much love to participate

  6. Abdullahi Mohamed Isak
    Abdullahi Mohamed Isak says:

    I really liked and I appreciate what you are in the world. These days the life depends on electricity more than anything else and SMA doing great work in the renewable energy. I attended and got a certificate one project that SMA did in Somalia and I would the future to work with SMA.

    • Maria Simone Aydin
      Maria Simone Aydin says:

      Hi Abdullahi,
      thank your for this kind compliment! We also appreciate people like you!
      Kind regards from Germany,

    • khalid abdi
      khalid abdi says:

      Good job my brother and go forward. I would like to help me how i can get SMA courses for solar and training for it

      • Christiane Keim
        Christiane Keim says:

        Hello Khalid,

        Here you will find all information regarding our trainings and webinars.

        Sunny regards

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