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Research Article Open Access
Energy self-sufficiency is a concern on the rise over the last few years, as energy transition away from fossil fuels is pressing and (energy) security issues gain importance. To help in creating a first overlook at regional energy self-sufficiency, a preliminary study is here reported, for the Portuguese region of Évora. The study quantifies the energy generated by a large photovoltaic array (composed by static and dynamic parts), plus a solar concentration backup system, managing energy storage through the latter and a Pb-Acid range of stationary batteries. Solar energy production technologies are prioritized because this region is one of the most radiated municipalities in Portugal (and across Europe), being low on other renewable energy sources (ex: wind, hydraulic and geothermal). Preliminary results show that a peak photovoltaic system power capacity of 397 MW (dynamic and static systems combined), served by an 230 MW input power Pb-Acid battery system and backed up by a parabolic panel solar concentration system with 144 MW of electrical power output capacity, can cover energy demand at about 99.9% of the time. Surplus energy generated by the solar concentration backup system can still be offered or traded with neighboring regions, to the benefit of all stakeholders.