Exploiting the rooftop solar photovoltaic potential of a tropical island state: case of the Mascarene Island of Mauritius

Abstract

Mauritius relies heavily on fossil fuel imports to satisfy the energy requirements of its population. Urged by policies to address climate change at the national and international levels, the government is committed to promote sustainable development, with emphasis laid on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Consequently, we provide an assessment of rooftop PV potential at the national level. A sampling strategy is used to acquire reduction coefficients, which are thereafter applied to energy-based equations. The result suggests that the rooftop PV potential at the country-scale is estimated at 20.04 GW with an annual energy output of 32,512 GWh. A novel architectural layout for a Solar City to be located at an identified optimum site is proposed. A shading analysis is conducted to verify the appropriateness of the city’s structural design to harness energy from the sun. An energy analysis performed, reveals that the Solar City has a solar power potential of 13.55 MW and an annual energy generation capacity equivalent to 21.99 GWh. Construction of the Solar City would help avert the emissions of 13,744 tons of CO2 annually.

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Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful to the Mauritius Meteorological Services for data provision. Thanks are extended to the cartography section of the Ministry of Housing and Lands for the availability of the digital elevation model, settlement areas and high-resolution image. The adequate facilities provided by the University of Mauritius enabled the research presented in this paper. The insights provided by Dr. Lollchund at the initial stage of the current research are kindly acknowledged.

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Correspondence to Jay Rovisham Singh Doorga.

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Doorga, J.R.S., Tannoo, R., Rughooputh, S.D.D.V. et al. Exploiting the rooftop solar photovoltaic potential of a tropical island state: case of the Mascarene Island of Mauritius. Int J Energy Environ Eng (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40095-020-00375-9

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Keywords

  • Rooftop PV
  • Solar energy modelling
  • Solar city
  • GIS
  • Urban architecture
  • Mauritius