GEA upgrades solar system batteries at St. Cuthbert’s Mission secondary school


The Guyana Energy Agency (GEA), on Monday installed an upgraded 48kWh Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) at the St. Cuthbert’s Mission secondary school at Pakuri along the Linden Soesdyke Highway.

The upgrade cost roughly $1.6 million and is essential for the stable operation of the off-grid 6.2kWp Solar PV System. The system provides clean and renewable electricity supply to the school, dormitory, and teacher’s quarters. Its operation is estimated to save 5.07 tonnes CO2 emissions annually.

The battery bank installed at St Cuthbert’s Mission secondary school includes sixteen (16) batteries configured in a 48Vdc, 1000Ah arrangement (Photo: GEA)

Benefiting approximately 135 students and 11 teachers, the initiative allows St Cuthbert’s Mission secondary use of their well-equipped computer laboratory to complete School Based Assessments (SBAs) and post essential study material as well as exam notifications and results online.

The lack of stable electricity to the school was discovered by the GEA during an Energy Needs Assessment exercise in 2021. The BESS installed in 2016 was depleted preventing students and teachers from conducting many essential educational activities.

To provide context, Pakuri has an electricity mini-grid network supplied by a 135kVA diesel-fueled generator. Owing to high fuel costs, electricity is only provided for four (4) hours daily, in the early evening.

Although this meets the electricity needs of a section of the community’s residences and small businesses, the timing of the supply was outside regular school hours and so not optimized to cater for educational needs.

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