OREANDA-NEWS. ABB will power the largest logistics hub of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) through a state-of-the-art microgrid, delivering reliable power for the first time in a region exposed to frequent outages and power quality issues.

Located in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, the global logistics center for the ICRC employs 170 employees delivering food and other essential items like medicines and relief supplies across the African continent.

ABB will build a microgrid for the ICRC that runs on solar energy and diesel to maximize the use of renewable energy and ensure reliable power supply. It is scheduled for completion by the middle of 2017. The agreement reflects an ICRC initiative launched in 2014 for greater technology collaboration with the private sector.

“We are delighted to partner and support the humanitarian work of the International Committee of the Red Cross,” said ABB CEO Ulrich Spiesshofer. “Microgrids have enormous potential in Africa, where more than 600 million people live without access to electricity. Reliable access to electricity is essential to speed up economic development.”

Microgrids are used to integrate distributed energy resources and loads that can be operated in a controlled, coordinated way either connected to the main power grid or to provide power independently, ensuring utility-grade power quality and grid stability.

“Reliable power is essential for our staff to continue their life-saving work uninterrupted in the field,” said ICRC President Peter Maurer. “In addition, the ABB microgrid solution is in line with the ICRC’s goal to use environmentally friendly technologies. Solutions like this are proof that cooperation between the corporate and humanitarian sectors is not only possible, but imperative. We are happy and proud to count ABB as a member of our corporate support group.”

ABB is a pioneer in microgrid technology with a track record of more than 30 global installations that are operated commercially for a diverse range of applications such as remote communities, islanded electrical grids, utility grid support and research and industrial campuses.