In the final phase of Solar Payback in South Africa, the local partner Indo-German Chamber of Commerce interviewed key stakeholders in the administrative and financial sector as well as representative of industrial associations about their attitude towards solar heat for industrial processes (SHIP). Selected statements from these interviews were used for a social media campaign in form of banners.
The banners were published between June and July 2021 in twitter, facebook and Linkedin and provoked high rates of interactions. There was a certain agreement among the interview partners that solar thermal technology is a cost-effective solution to cover heat demand in manufacturing processes, but the decision makers also asked for fore demonstration projects and additional support measures to drive awareness and the uptake of SHIP.
“A greater emphasis should be placed on showcasing real world examples that is to say case studies and/or reference projects, which highlight genuine cost savings and/or efficiency gains. Effective communication with decision makers should lead to a greater uptake,” said for example Raoul Gossen from the Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa.
Others also asked for hard facts on costs and efficiency savings of solar process heat solutions. “At the moment the technology still seems like a bit of a dark science,” commented Jan Muller, Project Manager at Automotive Industry Development Center. He made clear that potential off-takers need more information on the current price points for solar heat technologies and potential cost savings.
Some of the interview partners assessed the Solar Payback project as “a very informative initiative that provided deep insights into SHIP” (interview with Linda Cele, Managing Director of the company Energy in Motion Technologies). Cele profited from taking part in trainings which gave him a “better understanding of the potential of SHIP technology in South Africa and the target market landscape”.