Technology supplier Bosch South Africa is considering the potential of locally manufacturing solar technology, MD Dr Steffen Hoffmann tells Engineering News.
Given the heightened global environmental awareness, its parent company, Bosch Group, which is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year, is currently strengthening its business in the renew- able-energy market with the introduction of solar water heating technology.
Bosch Group first entered the renew- able-energy market through its acquisition of German solar cell manufacturer Ersol, in 2008. The company’s solar energy division develops and manufactures photo- voltaic products ranging from solar cells and modules through to turnkey solar power stations. In addition to crystalline technology, it also produces thin-film solar modules.
Solar cells are currently manufactured by its parent company in Europe and installed by local partner companies in South Africa. Hoffmann says the company still faces many challenges in terms of its plans to locally manufacture the technology, as there is not much clarity from the South African government regarding the connection of solar power to State-owned power utility Eskom’s grid.
This uncertainty has a negative impact on potential customers.
Meanwhile, commenting on the group’s 125th anniversary, Bosch South Africa human resources and communications manager Lorrianne du Plessis says this milestone signifies the company’s stability in the various markets.
She adds that this also provides employees with job security.
Bosch South Africa has two main activi- ties, namely automotive technology, and consumer goods and building technology.
Automotive technology is one of the biggest corporate divisions of the com- pany and operates worldwide.
Bosch South Africa is also involved in the consumer goods and building technology market, which includes the supply of power tools, household appli- ances and security systems.