Cape Town – Learning that is available through the technology available at the nation's first national renewable energy technology center in South Africa must be available outside of Cape West, said Gwebinkunda Qonda's director, high school and training.
Yesterday, he talked about launching the South African Center for Renewable Energy Technology (Saretec) at Campbell Bellville at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT).
A significant event brought a number of industrial partners who support Saretec and the leading site in the area of renewable energy.
Qonde emphasized the need for moving towards renewable energy sources.
"Saretec is in space where he can maximally influence through research-informed teaching and skills development in community, industry and society.
"The Department is pleased that the project started in 2012 and now provides all the necessary specialized skills for the growing renewable energy industry in South Africa," he said.
Qonda said the department had made available R105 million for the National Skills Fund to set up and equip Sareteca, which included R24 million for its operating fees for three years.
The only center of this kind in Africa, Saretec trains technicians for wind turbine and solar photovoltaic (PV) technicians, and is also responsible for training energy efficiency technicians and biomass / biogas.
Sareteca's director Naim Rassool said the concept came from the strong need to train these scarce skills within the renewable energy industry.
"When he saw that none of the educational institutions had the ability to do this training and there was the idea of Saretac," he said.
"They traveled to Germany several times to see what the Renewable Energy Training Center looks like.
"We received funds in 2012, started to build in 2015. In 2016, we started our first training program," he said.
Rassool said the industry needed technicians, from the first eight in the final stage of rigorous training and all manually selected according to qualifications and backgrounds.
He said that in 2020 with new wind power plants will be on the network, the need will be greater and Saretec will train 24 technicians.
CPUT Deputy Chancellor Dr. Chris Nhlapo said the need for such a center came from the government's announcement that in the next 10 years 6 724 megawatt solar and wind power plants would be installed.
He said it meant that higher education institutions should train and build infrastructure in this highly specialized area, making the CPUT ideal.
Frenrico Resandt, from Eneke at Piketberg, a trainee as a trainee, has a qualification in electrical engineering.
"I signed up for the program last year, but because of student disorder it stopped, but this year I got a call and asked me if I was still interested," he said.
"I stopped working as a radiofrequency technician. I worked in electronics when I was in the Navy, so I grabbed this opportunity with both hands."
Sinovuyo Mhlobo-Nqamakwe, from the East Cape, has a mechanical national diploma from Walter Sisulu University.
Mhlobo-Nqamakwe said the training was rigorous, but he enjoyed it every minute.
She said there were only three women in training, and they were supported and helped by male colleagues.