Ntuli
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With 19 operational wind farms, South Africa’s wind energy sector continues on the upward trajectory.

With efforts to boost the sector’s growth locally, turbine blade access and repair specialist Altitec, has officially opened its doors following last year’s signing of a joint venture with Obelisk, a provider of infrastructure services to the global renewable energy, telecommunications and power markets.

Based in Cape Town, the new company will deliver turbine rotor blade inspection and repair services across Sub-Saharan Africa, and offer certified training courses to help new technicians enter the industry.

Altitec managing director, Tom Dyffort, commented in a statement: “Wind power has great potential to become a significant part of South Africa’s energy mix.

“Despite recent delays in signing the Window 4 PPAs, the market is expected to see significant medium- to long-term growth in its installed capacity, and we are therefore investing now in the technical skills and job development needed to match future demand.”

He added: “Equally, and as markets across sub-Saharan Africa expand, and the number of wind turbines and rotor blades increase, high quality blade repair and maintenance programmes will be key to ensuring this energy source delivers reliably.”

Local capacity building

The firm said in a statement that the wind industry has employed over 100,000 people over the past four years. Over the past 4 years, more than 100,000 jobs have been created by the industry in South Africa alone.

Continuing in this vein, Altitec South Africa, under the guidance of Altitec’s London team, will open a second Altitec Academy, offering its certified training courses and looking to attract new turbine blade technicians from across the continent.

Dyffort continued: “Leading up to the launch of Altitec South Africa, we have developed a strong relationship with Obelisk, benefiting from their experience and understanding of the local market to support our Europe-based turbine blade technicians as they serviced wind energy contracts for our clients in Sub-Saharan Africa.

“As the wind industry grows and matures across the region, this work will need to be delivered by local teams…”

 

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