Battery Energy Storage for Photovoltaic Application in South Africa: A Review

Bonginkosi A. Thango, Pitshou N. Bokoro

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Despite the significant slowdown of economic activity in South Africa by virtue of the COVID-19 outbreak, load shedding or scheduled power outages remained at a high level. The trend of rising load-shedding hours has persisted throughout most of the year 2022. Operational issues within the South African power utility inflamed the unpredictable nature of generation capacity, resulting in unscheduled outages at several generating units, mostly due to multiple breakdowns. To forestall substantial spikes in energy costs, an increasing number of enterprises and homeowners have started to gradually adopt renewable energy technologies to sustain their operational demand. Therefore, there is an increase in the exploration and investment of battery energy storage systems (BESS) to exploit South Africa’s high solar photovoltaic (PV) energy and help alleviate production losses related to load-shedding-induced downtime. As a result, the current work presents a comprehensive and consequential review conducted on the BESS specifically for solar PV application and in the South African context. The research investigations carried out on BESS for PV application are crucially examined, drawing attention to their capacities, shortcomings, constraints, and prospects for advancement. This investigation probed several areas of interest where the BESS-PV scheme is adopted, viz., choice of battery technology, mitigating miscellaneous power quality problems, optimal power system control, peak load shaving, South African BESS market and status of some Real BESS-PV projects. The techno-economic case scenario has been proposed in the current research and results yield that lithium-ion batteries are more viable than Lead–acid batteries.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5962
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022


  • battery energy storage systems (BESS)
  • load shedding
  • photovoltaic (PV)
  • South Africa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Building and Construction
  • Fuel Technology
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Energy (miscellaneous)
  • Control and Optimization
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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