Intelligent ways of using existing technologies or innovative solutions to solve problems experienced by legacy standalone generators are key in the African and South African generator-set market, says power solutions company Diesel Electric Services commercial sales manager Richard Baxter.
“We have a strong research and development arm in the business focused not only on investigating alternative fuel sources for reciprocating engines, but also on practi- cality, usability and improving existing designs, as well as develop- ing new designs. We aim to use existing technologies in a more innovative way and to introduce more efficient and effective designs for reliable power solutions.”
Diesel Electric Services received global market consultancy Frost & Sullivan’s 2012 Best Practice Award for Competitive Strategy and Leadership in the local energy market, in recognition of the company’s significant growth over the past number of years in a competitive market, says Frost & Sullivan Energy and Power Systems research analyst Tanye ver Loren van Themaat.
“We identified customer service and care as a strong competitive advantage for companies in this market,” head of best practice innovation and leadership for Africa Birgitta Cederstrom notes.
Diesel Electric Services hopes to emerge as one of the largest providers of standby power solu- tions in the South African market, and aims to explore further oppor-tunities in the Southern African region, says Baxter.
Financial institutions, banks, information technology (IT) companies, data centres and telecommunications applications have all shown sustained and growing demand for reliable standby power generators, owing to the high cost of power outages in these industries, explains Baxter.
There is also potential, he believes, for industry to use gas-fired, or diesel-fired, generators to provide both electricity and process heating or cooling.“Dairies, breweries and combined heat and power industrial applications that require heating or cooling are prime opportunities to introduce tri- generation technologies, which greatly increases the efficiency of gas-fired or diesel-fired gener- ators.”
Further, the company is excited about the opportunities presented by radio astronomy projects, such as the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) and the MeerKAT telescopes. “We aim to work on some of the large power equipment requirements for MeerKAT and, hopefully, for the SKA,” concludes Baxter.