The two countries are connected to each other by submarine cables using high voltage direct current transmission. The British will cover eight per cent of their electricity needs in the future.
In a few more years, the UK will receive 8% of its electricity from Morocco. In the southern province of Guelmim Oued Noun, 1500 km.2 Photovoltaic systems and wind generators are installed at peak output of 10.5 GW. The solar system alone covers an area of 200 km22. Due to its high level of solar radiation, the yield of solar energy per unit area is twice that of Central Europe and 20% higher than that of Spain’s sun-drenched areas.
Batteries save 20 gigawatt hours
A portion of the electricity is stored in a very large battery system. It absorbs 20 GWh and is used to reduce power outages caused by the serenity and darkness that are rare on the west coast of North Africa. It is planned to provide 3.5 GW of electricity for more than 20 hours a day. During low consumption hours of the night, except in exceptional cases, electricity should not be supplied from Morocco.
The new nuclear power plant offers less
This output is slightly higher than the two new nuclear power plants under construction at Hinkley Point, UK. They total 3.26 GW. According to current estimates, the commission will begin in 2026. The € 26 billion construction cost is similar to the cost for the Morocco-UK Power Project, also known as the ambitious project.
The submarine cable is 3,800 km long
Green electricity from Morocco is transported to Great Britain via underwater cable. For this purpose, the electricity generated is first converted into direct current with a high voltage. 600,000 to 1,000,000 V imaginable – final result still pending. At distances greater than 750 km, the losses in high voltage direct current transmission are less than in transmission of three-phase current. With a length of 3,800 km, the cable between Morocco and Great Britain meets this requirement so far. At its destination in Devon County in southwest England, electricity is being switched back on so that it can be supplied to the high voltage phase.
More than 50 percent green electricity
As of 2019, the UK has produced 50% of carbon-free electricity. However, the country is struggling with two issues. The country’s solar power plants are shortening their power generation seasons as winter approaches. There are recessions, which strike the English very hard. After all, wind power, next to nuclear power, is the most important source of electricity. As in Germany, storage facilities that can store excess electricity are nowhere near adequate. In contrast, the sun in Morocco shines for more than ten hours a day, even in winter.
The world’s largest solar power plant
Morocco has grown into a leading international user of renewable energy over the past ten years. The country was a pioneer in major innovative projects such as the Noor Ouarzazate complex, home to the world’s largest solar power plant with a current generation of 510 MW. It was partially funded by Germany through the KfW Bank Group in Frankfurt. In addition, the country has set up a solid legal framework to encourage investment in renewable energy.
The power of Great Britain is connected with the mainland
The UK is already connected to Norway by a 1.4 GW submarine cable with 100% hydropower. An equally powerful cable will in the future connect the Isle of Green substations in the southeast of Great Britain and the Federwerth in Wilhelmshaven, which could provide more wind power to Great Britain. Electricity can be exchanged with the UK, France, Belgium and the Netherlands.
Next week you will learn how populous Singapore can meet 20% of its electricity needs with wind and solar power.
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