Varied interests in the energy and power sector viz., CDM, carbon rating, Monitoring & Evaluation, Energy Management, Rural Development; Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy related matters; Demand Side Management (DSM), Energy Audits, Distributed Power Generation (Biomass, Wind,Solar and Small Hydro), Participatory Management.

Thursday, April 16, 2009


Govt. of India looks to hybrid solar solutions to cut power costs

14 April 2009

The department of science and technology of the Government of India has constituted a consortium comprising eminent researchers and students from leading IITs and private industry to undertake research on low-cost solar energy.

A team of around 50 researchers selected from different IITs in the country are working on developing hybrid, off-grid solutions for reducing cost of electricity generated using solar energy.

The project, initiated almost six months ago, aims at bringing down electricity costs significantly and help supply power without transmission lines.

The researchers have already had four-five ''brainstorming'' sessions, T Ramasami, secretary in the department of science and technology, said.

''Fifty students from IITs is a pretty good number, and they are bright guys'', he said.

The research is being validated by the private sector supporting industries and some research institutions and the hybrid solutions being developed are expected to be viable, he said, adding, the project is slated to be completed latest by May.

Under the existing system, Ramasami said, Rs20 crore investment is needed to generate one megawatt of power, which is too high.

Researchers are evaluating a hybrid solution that is least dependent on transmission grid, and which can bring down to the cost of solar energy to Rs9 per kilowatt hour from about Rs12-14 kw/hour, with minimal investment, he said.

The project will reduce the cost of production of alternative energy to a significant level so as to promote the use of renewable energy and reduce dependency on known energy sources, especially fossil fuels.

Cheaper solar energy will benefit those regions in the country which do not have the transmission line.

Large scale use of solar energy, which is an abundant and clean form of energy, has been hampered by high costs of developing solar panels that contain photo voltaic cells necessary for converting the sun's energy into a usable form, such as electricity.

Though costs are decreasing, the decrease has not been enough to bring solar energy within the reach of the common people.

Gopinath S
Chief Executive
nRG Consulting Services, Bangalore
+91 99161 29728


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