Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy: On the 5th of April 2018, Nigeria’s first renewable energy academy and solar plant launched in Kaduna State.
On a recent visit to the plant for first hand experience.
I notice how a now defunct Peugeot Automobile plant.
Chanchangi Motors, and Coca-Cola plant are all lined up on the long windy road.
Leading through Kakuri to Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy
At the end of a dusty drive spanning over 30 minutes.
There is an imposing white structure dotting the landscape.
Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy is sitting on approximately 3 hectares of sprawling land in the near outskirts of Kakuri.
The academy will train students to become vendors, developers, installers.
Technicians and service providers of renewable energy technologies.
The academy is the first on renewable energy in Nigeria, according to Asteven Group.
The development falls under efforts to help expand Nigeria’s renewable energy portfolio for the West African nation to secure its energy supply against growing demand.
Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy:Renewable Energy school
The school facility is largely empty, save for non-administrative staff and a few other workers.
It was explained that the first batch of 30 students had graduated from an 8-week long training.
Before the school was officially launched on the 5th of April and the next batch will resume in June.
Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy plans to engage and empower over 1,500 youths in the next 18 months.
These students will be trained on the assembly, installation, and marketing aspects of renewable energy.
The school’s facilities and classes are scattered in different parts of the building.
In the hallway leading out of the reception area.
There are two lecture halls for professional training.
Conferences and lectures; 60 and 40-person capacity.
A library with books and educational texts strictly on energy in general is centrally facing the two lecture halls.
Even though not fully stocked, materials in the library are so carefully selected.
“A whole day spent here immersed in the literature will improve anybody’s knowledge on energy matters to a very large extent.”
Apart from strictly renewable energy classes.
Students in Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy will also be exposed to a range of crafts that are still related to the core.
“From carpentry, painting to plumbing, there is a whole range of workmanship related to renewable energy that people ignore or typically do not associate with it.
They will train students across these disciplines .
If tuition for all these offerings are charged regularly.
They will probably be prohibitively expensive for the average Nigerian to afford.
Apparently the first batch of students to graduate from the academy were trained free of charge inclusive of accommodation,feeding and transportation fare.
“We will charge people that can pay and put the monies back into training those that cannot afford it.
In association with agencies and organisations like the Department for International Development(DFID) and projects centred around marginalised youths.
It was identify that ones cannot pay these tuition fees and train them for free.
For its technical and entrepreneurial training.
Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy plans to charge up to ₦200,000.
Excluding accommodation — for a 4-6 week course.
On how they plan to recoup these massive costs that will accrue from free and heavily discounted training,
“Generally, we need better work ethics on our part as Nigerians.
In addition to equipping our students with the best technical skills available.
They will also learn punctuality, accountability, discipline, and commitment among other important soft skills.
They are empowered with a combination of all these.
But most importantly, as a result of these training.
Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy will also have a trusted pool of talents to draw on.
Upon completion of training, these students will work on projects for the company and in the assembly line.
Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy:Inside the engine room
The production and assembly facility is right next to the library.
The assembly line itself has a 40-worker capacity standing workstation.
40 and 80-watt Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy Solar street lights are the only products currently on the assembly shelf.
These lights are complete packages with batteries, photovoltaic cells and the bulbs all in one encasement.
They are also water and dust resistant with an IP65 rating.
At the end of the assembly line, there is a Complete Knock Down (CKD) room where imported bits and pieces of products are stored before coming out to the line to be assembled.
The Quality Control (QC) room is right next to CKD and like the name implies.
This is where final checks are done for strict adherence to standards.
On the opposite side of the hall facing the CKD and QC rooms, a door leads out to a showroom.
Regardless of its recent foray into manufacturing and assembly.
Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy still does installation of renewable energy structures so this showroom showcases a vast array of exciting products.
From different kinds of lighting; garage lights, garden and walkway lighting, signage lights, to refrigeration units, and energy roofing tiles all powered by solar energy.
Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy:Outdoor glory
There are other renewable energy marvels outside the academy and assembly plant.
Unsurprisingly, the whole facility is powered by a 15.4kWh solar power system on the roof of a tensile car parking shed.
This of course will not be sufficient when production and training is in full gear because power consumption will increase drastically.
The roof on the main building is equipped to be outfitted with solar roofing tiles.
And that this will happen once the energy needs increase.
Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy has other proprietary products.
A solar dryer for vegetables, and the Solar-Fi Hub.
The Solar-Fi Hub is an all in one business unit that is intended to solve the Nigerian infrastructural problem for small businesses.
It is a kiosk outfitted with a cooling system, refrigerator, beverage makers and a television all powered by the sun.
The water distribution systems in Nigerian Solar Plant Energy Academy are also solar-powered.
A water heater and functional borehole all powered by the sun.
A plumber fixed the borehole and pipes in the water heater need a special coat that need the professionalism of a painter.
All these seemingly unrelated but necessary skills are the reasons and students will be trained in diverse crafts.