The wind power system supplies green electricity generated from high-altitude winds to the island grid. The project serves to demonstrate the commercial viability of the technology for the market entry to East Africa and the region of the Indian Ocean.
A revolutionary new technology for green power supply has taken off on the island of Mauritius: A kite of 120 m² flies over the
sugar cane fields of the island in the Indian Ocean to harness the wind in several hundred meters of altitude. The system is
operated by SkySails Power Indian Ocean, a joint venture of German company SkySails Power and Mauritian IBL Energy
Holdings. Following a period of installation and commissioning, the electricity operator CEB has officially confirmed the grid compliance of the system and granted the permit to feed electricity into the island grid. After successful validation, the project
will position the Republic of Mauritius as hub for the deployment of the innovative technology in East Africa and the region
of the Indian Ocean.
The project was awarded by the Mauritius Renewable Energy Agency (MARENA) under the National scheme for emerging/
innovative renewable energy technologies. The Republic of Mauritius is targeting a 60% share of renewables in its electricity
mix by 2030. The project is now being carried out with the collaboration of MARENA, CEB and MRIC (Mauritius Research and Innovation Counci). The Economic Development Board has been supportive in the implementation and facilitation of the project
Stephan Wrage, CEO SkySails Power GmbH: “We are proud to make our contribution to turn Mauritius more indepent from fossil energies. The objective of this project is to prove that airborne wind energy is an existing solution to provide green power to regions that highly depend on diesel generators up to now.”
Pierre Egot, General Manager of IBL Energy: “IBL Energy has found with SkySails technology the answer to meet the requirements of a call to proposals for innovative renewable energy technologies from the Mauritian Renewable Energy Agency. This pilot project has a local and national focus for now, but the technology holds strong promises for deployment tomorrow in the entire Indian Ocean because the winds there are strong and regular.”
published on Jan 10, 2023, online at: [LinkedIn] (2023): https://www.linkedin.com/company/iblgroup/
How the SkySails Power System works:
Airborne wind energy systems harness the so far untapped powerful resource of high-altitude wind at altitudes of up to 400 meters. For energy production, the automatically controlled power kite rises in figures of eight, driven by the wind. As it gains altitude, it unwinds a tether from a winch on the ground. The tractive force drives a generator inside the winch that produces electricity. Once the tether has reached its maximum extension of 800 meters, the autopilot steers the kite into a neutral position with minimal drag and lift. While consuming only a fraction of the energy generated before, the generator now acts as a motor and reels-in the tether. The system continuously repeats this process, flying the kite at an altitude of 200 to 400 meters. Energy generated by the Airborne Wind Energy System can be fed into the grid, stored in batteries, or directly consumed.