Luxury hotel in Chile to expand PV plant and add battery storage

Luxury hotel in Chile to expand PV plant and add battery storage
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Tierra Atacama Hotel & Spa, winner of the prestigious World Travel Award "Chile's Leading Spa Resort 2016", is a luxury retreat surrounded by the breathtaking landscape of the Atacama Desert. Owned by Tierra Hotels, the Tierra Atacama Hotel & Spa offers a unique fusion of relaxation and adventure, making it a beloved destination for travel fans from all over the world.

Tierra Hotels' philosophy of advocating its natural environment is mirrored in its quest for sustainability and it was named the "Most Sustainable Tourism Company in Chile" for its use of solar energy and organic architecture. In 2013 Kraftwerk Renewable Power Solutions designed, engineered and constructed Tierra Hotels' first PV plant - an off-grid PV-diesel hybrid system with 23.04 kWp that has since been generating up to 50% of Tierra Atacama Hotel & Spa's daytime electricity needs.

Kraftwerk will expand the existing PV plant by an additional 133 kWp and implement a 330 kWh high-efficient Li-Ion battery storage and energy management solution. Kraftwerk's Managing Director, Karsten Schulte, explains, "By expanding the PV plant and incorporating storage, the diesel gensets will be switched off completely for 8 to 9 hours per day plus a few hours each night. The hotel will benefit from 60 to 65% annual diesel savings, not to mention a significant increase in the existing genset's lifetime."

The expansion of the Tierra Atacama Hotel & Spa's PV plant was selected as a showcase project by the German Energy Agency (dena). The project is now part of the worldwide Renewable Energy Solutions (RES) Programme 2015/17, which is coordinated by dena and co-financed by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) within the German Energy Solutions Initiative.

"We are glad to be a part of this lighthouse project," said Steffen Heinrich, Managing Director of the battery manufacturer Qinous, "Many hotels are in very remote locations with no grid access and this project will be an excellent example of how sustainable and environmentally friendly energy generation can be. Our battery system enables to switch the diesel gensets off. It also meets the typical requirements in such applications for low noise and simple serviceability."

Miguel Purcell, CEO of Tierra Hotels, is pleased, "One of our core values in Tierra Hotels is the protection of our environment, that's why we want to provide the best experience and service with minimal disruption. We've saved a significant amount of diesel over the past couple of years and have substantially decreased our carbon footprint. The experience we've had with running and maintaining the PV plant has encouraged us to take yet another step forward."

Technical Project Information
Business model: Self-consumption
Region: San Pedro de Atacama, Chile
System type: Off-grid, PV-battery diesel hybrid
PV power: 133 kWp (in addition to existing 23.04 kWp)
Battery system: Qinous ESS 150 kW/ 330 kWh high-efficient Li-Ion battery
Installation date: June 2017

Tierra Hotels

A portfolio of luxury hotels and resorts set in exceptional locations, Tierra Hotels was founded by the Purcell family who has a long established reputation for offering fine hospitality at Ski Portillo, Chile. Tierra Atacama Hotel & Spa opened in 2008 to rave reviews and was named to the Condé Nast Traveler "Hot List" and Travel + Leisure's "It List" of the top 30 best new hotels, as well as receiving other international accolades.


Qinous is a supplier of smart plug-and-play Energy Storage Solutions (ESS) with integrated Micro-grid and Energy Management System (MEMS) in the range from thirty kilowatt to several megawatts. The Qinous ESS is specifically designed for on-grid and off-grid applications in challenging environmental conditions. The standardized Qinous platform concept gives the necessary flexibility while guaranteeing continuous high quality at competitive costs. Qinous ESS are fully integrated solutions which are simple to install and to operate.

Deutsche Energie-Agentur (dena)

The Deutsche Energie-Agentur (dena) - the German Energy Agency - is Germany's centre of expertise for energy efficiency, renewable energy sources and intelligent energy systems. As "Agency for Applied Energy Transition", it contributes to attaining the goals of energy and climate politics by developing solutions and putting them into practice, both nationally and internationally. In order to do this, it brings together partners from all areas of politics and business. dena's partners are the Federal Republic of Germany, the KfW Group, Allianz SE, Deutsche Bank AG and DZ BANK AG.

German Energy Solutions Initiative

The transfer of energy expertise, the promotion of foreign trade and the facilitation of international development cooperation are part of the German Energy Solutions Initiative, which is coordinated and financed by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. The initiative offers networking and business opportunities in Germany and abroad, it showcases reference projects and facilitates capacity building.

dena Renewable Energy Solutions Programme (dena RES Programme)

The dena RES Programme was developed by the Deutsche Energie-Agentur (dena) - the German Energy Agency. This programme, co-financed by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy within the German Energy Solutions Initiative, helps German renewable energy companies enter new markets. Within the framework of the programme, reference and demonstration projects are installed near prestigious institutions. The installation is accompanied by comprehensive PR, marketing and training programmes. These projects showcase high-quality German renewable energy technology and help participating companies gain a foothold in new markets. Project
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