Kandahar University received 900 PV panels donated by solar manufacturer First Solar, establishing the school as Afghanistan’s beacon for renewable energy.
Support from the local government and the Kandahar Provincial Construction Team made the $1 million delivery possible. These will generate 135 kW of electricity, enough energy to fully meet the campus’ needs.
The panels will generate around 170 kW of excess energy after complete installation, which will be fed back to the local grid.
All the equipment was delivered via a convoy of local flatbed trucks, escorted by US military personnel and the Infrastructure Team.
“With these solar panels, our success will be an example for other universities and the rest of the country,” said Abdul Tawab, deputy head of science at the university.
Afghanistan has an average of 320 days of sunshine annually. Fittingly, Kandahar University recently established its own energy department—the first of its kind in the country—tasked with optimizing the city’s energy potential.
To date, the school has been using 30 panels that were also donated by First Solar, generating eight kW of electricity to power its administration building and streetlights on campus. Once installation of these new PV panels is complete, the campus will be self-sustainable.