SMA is represented in 21 countries around the world and in our series introducing new foreign companies we also highlight emergent photovoltaic markets. Today’s focus is on SMA South America which is based in Chile.
SMA South America was founded one year ago. During their first year, the team there was busy. They spent time making contacts and implementing their first projects, and at the end of March, SMA South America inaugurated their new office in Santiago de Chile with an official ceremony. As part of the festivities, Vice President Sales Emerging Markets, Oussama Chehab, General Manager Daniel Rosende and his team warmly welcomed important customers such as PV project developers, EPCs, utility company representatives among other stakeholders. The project developers’ serious interest in our products and in collaborating with SMA underscore the South American market’s potential and the urgency of the energy transition.
Chile has 300 Sunny days per year
The climatic and geologic conditions in Chile such as varying altitudes and seismic activities pose significant challenges to SMA products and service. However, because of optimal irradiation values and an increasing energy demand the interest in solar energy is obviously huge.
“We are a small, quick-witted team that, in addition to managing the organizational tasks involved in establishing a fully functioning foreign company, is already implementing its first large-scale PV project,” Daniel said proudly. “South America is a photovoltaic market with incredible potential and we will gradually tap into it, starting in Santiago.”
Initial reference projects
Back at the end of 2012, the team supplied Sunny Tripower inverters for the largest PV plant to date in northwestern Chile. The PV plant now supplies solar energy to a plantation’s irrigation system. At 1.2 MWp, it is the largest PV plant to be connected to the Chilean Central Interconnected System SIC (Sistema Interconectado Central).
The progress in Chile continues, equipped with four Sunny Central inverters with Optiprotect and two Transformer Compact Stations, the first 3-MW project is expected to begin operation by the end of May of 2013.
16.8 million inhabitants (Germany: 81.7 million)
Area: 755,696 km², usable land area for PV: 97% (Germany: 357,121 km²)
310 sunny days per year (Germany: 275 sunny days per year)
5 percent economic growth (2012) (Germany: 0.7 percent)
Target: 7 GW of energy growth by 2020, mainly from renewable energy sources
Prospects: High solar irradiation, many sites suitable for PV farms
Challenges: Heat, extreme altitudes, grid capacity
SMA subsidiary founded: February 2012
SMA operational start: August 2012
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What even my colleagues do not know about me:
As a teenager, I was the passenger for car scavenger hunts and always took the trophy for best female and youngest participant home – which was not that difficult.