The Mohammed VI Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMVI) in Rabat, Morocco is set to be powered by solar energy, becoming Africa’s first national museum to produce its own electricity with a solar photovoltaic installation. The National Museum Foundation (FNM) and the Research Institute for Solar Energy and New Energies (IRESEN) of Morocco are commissioning this mini solar PV system, coupled with a battery storage system at the museum.
The initiative is part of Moroccan King Mohammed VI’s commitment to tackle climate change and related issues. This solar installation was launched by the President of the FNM, Mehdi Qotbi, and the Director-General of IRESEN, Badr Ikken, under a partnership signed in October 2020, for the development of an innovative model of energy production and management at the MMVI.
This model of energy transition aims at reducing the energy bill of MMVI by 50%. It includes the installation of the 130 kWp solar rooftop system connected with a storage solution of 20kWh, allowing better management of electricity consumption during peak hours The model also relies on complete automation of the supervision and management of environmental parameters by developing a new real-time supervision system and optimizing the energy consumption of energy-intensive terminals.
This solar powered system is implemented by Green Energy Park (GEP), a platform for testing, research & training in solar energy, that is operated by IRESEN and the University Mohammed VI Polytechnic. According to FNM and IRESEN, the museum anticipates becoming the perfect model of a harmonious alliance of art and environmental responsibility. The organizations also plan to duplicate this new model of the energy transition to other museums in Morocco, as well. With this step, Morocco positions itself as a pioneer in installing solar panels in its museums.
IRESEN, created in 2011 by the Moroccan Ministry of Energy, Mines, Water and Environment, intends to play a leading role in the country’s energy transition by conducting research on renewable energy and electric mobility. The institute works on to support Morocco’s current objective to produce 52% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030. The Moroccan government has also recently announced its vision to raise the share of renewable energies to 70% by 2040 and 80% by 2050.