The existing distribution system of Ethiopia has encountered frequent power outages. During this outage, the critical load of most firms in the country is supplied by diesel fuel. This study examines the feasibility of integrating solar PV system into an existing unreliable grid/diesel generator system for supplying the critical load of Kombolcha Industry Park (11°5′0″ N, 39° 44′ 0″ E), Ethiopia. The work was begun by collecting the load data, grid outage and meteorological data of the study site. Then, optimal design, modeling and techno-economic analysis of grid connected PV/diesel system has been carried out using HOMER Pro optimization software by exploring three different scenarios. Results showed that grid/PV/diesel systems are technically, economically and environmentally feasible for the selected location with the cost of energy 0.048 $/kWh. It is also found that the emissions in the optimized grid/PV/diesel systems for the locations decreased by 46%, compared to the existing grid/diesel system. This study will provide a helpful awareness to the concerned stakeholders and policy makers to implement gridconnected PV systems in the north central part of Ethiopia.
Keywords Solar PV; Grid-connected; Unreliable grid; Technoeconomic analysis; Emission