May 26, 2024

                     Nigeria has a shortage of skilled solar technicians; this is one challenge!


Oredola Adeola


Due to the shortage of skilled solar technicians in Nigeria, DayStar Power Group, a Shell-owned Solar Company, has launched a training program for third-party solar installers in the country, aimed at providing beneficiaries with the expertise to install solar systems proficiently and on time while adhering to safety protocols.



This was disclosed by the company in a statement obtained by EnergyDay on Friday.



DayStar, which was acquired in December 2022, by Shell as its renewable subsidiary firm, is a leading provider of hybrid solar power solutions to commercial and industrial (C&I) hubs in West Africa.



According to the company, the program is in line with its goal to achieve 400MW of installed solar capacity across Africa by 2025, an eightfold increase compared to our current capacity.


It said, “Nigeria’s solar sector is gaining remarkable momentum as companies look to reduce high electricity costs. At Daystar, we’re rapidly expanding our solar installations to meet rising demand.



“Yet, Nigeria has a shortage of skilled solar technicians, this is one challenge. We launched our training program in August, and the results have been promising.


“We’ve conducted four successful sessions with third-party instructors, one each in Abuja and Port Harcourt, and two in Lagos training a total of 120 installers. And we’re just getting started.



“Our crew of 16-20 technicians takes six weeks to complete a 1MW installation. But even with our in-house project team running at full throttle, it’s just not enough to keep pace with booming demand, ” Daystar  Power said.



Speaking further on the challenges of addressing the skilled technical staff shortage in Nigeria and Africa atlarge, DayStar stated that it has realized that its installation sites were experiencing a shortage of experienced workers, which was affecting the company’s project timelines.


It said, “Our solar panel installations rely on precise design blueprints. Installers must meticulously align rails on both the x-axis and y-axis of solar mounts and align the L-feet clamps that attach solar panels to the roof.


“Yet, we noticed our installers struggled to keep to the installation standards which slowed down the installation time.


“The lack of qualified solar technicians stymies the growth of Nigeria’s solar industry. Without well-trained technicians, the quality of installations may be compromised, leading to diminished performance.



Daystar Power also disclosed that it has developed a comprehensive training program for third-party solar installers, aimed at bridging the skills gap in Nigeria’s renewable energy sector.



“The program covers technical training, including solar rooftop mounting systems and electrical safety, as well as health and safety training to prioritize safety and eliminate on-site accidents.



“With a focus on enhancing the reliability of solar installations, prioritizing safety, and supporting job creation within the renewable energy sector, the program is open to all individuals with a tertiary certificate.



The company therefore revealed that it is offering the trainees the opportunity to contribute to the high demand for solar and guarantee quality assurance in solar installations.