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Using solar PV and stationary storage to buffer the impact of electric minibus charging in grid-constrained sub-Saharan Africa
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  • Johan Giliomee ,
  • Brendan Pretorius ,
  • Larissa Füßl ,
  • Bernd Thomas ,
  • Marthinus Johannes Booysen
Johan Giliomee
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Brendan Pretorius
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Larissa Füßl
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Bernd Thomas
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Marthinus Johannes Booysen
Stellenbosch University

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Despite the unstoppable global drive towards electric mobility, the seemingly inevitable electrification of sub-Saharan Africa’s main mode of transportation, so-called “paratransit”, raises substantial concerns due to an already struggling electric infrastructure and supply network. Without careful planning and mitigation, the additional load of charging hundreds of thousands of electric minibus taxis during peak demand times could prove catastrophic if sufficient planning is not done. This paper assesses the grid impact of charging 202 taxis in Johannesburg, South Africa, and explore how to reduce peak grid demand and total energy drawn from the grid with external stationary battery storage and solar PV power. With the addition of battery storage at each charging station, coupled with a solar generation, the grid load impact is reduced by 66%, from 12kW/taxi to 4kW/taxi and the grid energy by 46% from 87kWh/taxi to 47kWh/taxi for a stationary battery of 60kWh/taxi and solar plant of 9.45kWpk/taxi. In addition, the inclusion of the solar PV supply also reduces the greenhouse gas emissions by 46%.