Orange Guinea Conakry and Ericsson are deploying over 100 base stations fully powered by solar energy, connecting remote parts of rural Africa. Using Ericsson's energy-efficient base stations, a hybrid diesel-battery solution and solar panels, Orange is increasing mobile coverage in rural and urban areas.
Alassane Diene, CEO of Orange-Guinea Conakry, says: "We are reducing our energy bill. These base stations are also easier to install and require less maintenance than the traditional site. They also offer greater reliability and therefore considerably improved quality of service."
Ericsson's hybrid diesel-battery energy solution replaces one of a site's diesel generators with a bank of specially designed batteries that can handle a large amount of charging and discharging. This self-contained power solution can be set to meet the batteries' optimal charging and discharging levels, extending the lifetime of the battery and the generator, and reducing energy-related costs by about 50 percent.
The Ericsson BTS 2111 radio base station is a main-remote solution without any active moving parts such as cooling fans. It reduces energy consumption up to 50 percent, allowing the site to be fully powered by solar energy, supported by a battery bank for 24/7 operation.
Orange Group intends to have more than 1,000 wholly solar-powered base stations in its African operations by the end of 2009.