Published: 18th September 2017
IIT Madras's latest initiative to bring solar technology to rural Telangana is indeed a bright one
The age-old problem of poeple in a small village in Telangana has now been solved as IIT Madras took their solar-powered technology to these households
For about six to eight hours every day, the people of Devarakonda, a small village in Telangana live without electricity. However, their age-old problem has now been solved as IIT Madras took their solar-powered technology to these households. The reputable institute, in collaboration with Telangana State Southern Power Distribution Company Limited (TSSPDCL) and Rural Electrification Corporation, took up this project to provide uninterrupted power through solar technology to these households spread across four hamlets in rural Telangana.
The project is implemented under the aegis of Ashok Jhunjhunwala, Principal Advisor, Ministries of Power and New and Renewable Energy, Government of India, and Professor (on sabbatical), IIT Madras. The technology called Inverterless System, comprises a 125 Wp solar panel, a 1 kWh battery, an inverterless controller unit and DC loads operating on a 48V DC internal distribution line. It powers a DC fan, a DC tube light, two DC bulbs, a DC mobile charger, a DC power socket and a remote controller to operate the fan and tube light.
Bright day: The technology called Inverterless System powers a DC fan, a DC tube light, two DC bulbs, a DC mobile charger, a DC power socket and a remote controller to operate the fan and tube light
Aditya Lolla, Project Officer, Centre for Decentralised Power Systems at IIT-M explains the working of the technology, "The technology is part of a solar DC initiative, keeping in mind that even though there are several solar-based solutions out in the market, because affordability is an issue especially in the rural areas, there is a need for technology that would make the system more effective and affordable to the people.”
He goes on to add, "In a traditional solar solution, you have a solar panel which is generating power in direct current. You use an inverter that converts direct current to alternate current and the reason for this is because all our appliances are traditionally AC based. Our inverter takes the DC current from the solar panel and converts it to AC, and then it sends some power to the battery to store energy, thereby bringing down your power consumption and cost drastically."
Inverterless has been installed in around 10,000 homes across 11 states in the country. Although it is currently suitable for lower-income households, Aditya believes that it will soon be implemented in middle-class households as well. The performance and health of all the installed systems are being monitored remotely, with data being collected via mobile phones and synchronised to a central server.