If we look at the current rate of development in India, it needs renewable energy as a prime source of energy to satisfy its power requirement. Solar energy is a very important renewable energy that is abundantly given by nature at free of cost, however, it has a basic cost of equipment and transmission which can easily be recovered in a shorter period of use.
Due to the favorable policies of the Indian government, the cost of solar power reduces day by day. It helps in reducing the carbon footprint in the environment as we use less amount of fossil-powered energy i.e. thermal power.
One step further in this direction, the union government on Tuesday launched a low-cost solar lamp that could be a boon to both the urban and rural population with no access to electricity. While launching the newly developed solar lamp Surya Jyoti in New Delhi, the union minister for science and technology Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that the low-cost micro solar dome light would be a boon to the poor in rural India and tenement areas or slums of urban pockets where there is no access to electricity.
Image credit: PIB.NIC
The device has been developed under the aegis of the Department of Science & Technology. The working of the device is illustrated by Dr. Harsh Vardhan. The Micro Solar Dome captures sunlight through a transparent semi-spherical upper dome and concentrates it inside a dark room. The light passes through a sun-tube having a thin layer of highly reflective coating on the inner wall of the passage.
It also contains a lower dome having a shutter at the bottom that can be closed if the light is not required in the daytime. Surya Jyoti is leakproof and works for almost 16 hours daily and 4 hours after sunset.
The following are the salient features of the Surya Jyoti Micro Solar Dome.
• According to preliminary estimates, if this technology is adopted in 10 million households only, it has the potential of saving 1750 million units of energy.
• It would also lead to an emission reduction of about 12.5 million tons of CO2 equivalent, hence giving a fillip to the mission of ‘Clean India, Green India’.
• The manufacturing process, being labor-intensive, would also generate huge job opportunities in the economy.
Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that the photo-voltaic integrated Surya Jyoti costs about Rs 1,200 and the non-photo-voltaic version costs around Rs 500. He also added that these figures are expected to drop further to Rs 900 and Rs 400 respectively once the production number rises and through future links with the subsidies under various schemes of the government.
According to a TERI University test report, the illumination level of the light during mid-day goes as high as a 15W LED bulb. Extensive testing of the device for select parameters has been completed at IIT Bombay, TERI University, and the Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology (IIEST), Kolkata. Field trials have been conducted and 300 Micro Solar Domes are being installed in the slums of Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Bengaluru, as reported by Orissa Diary.
The union minister of state for science and technology Y S Choudhary said that this technology could help save fossil fuels as one unit of energy saved is equivalent to three units of energy generated. He urged the corporate sector to fulfill its role under the Corporate Social Responsibilities Schemes to scale up the manufacturing of Surya Jyoti dome lamps.
This device can illuminate the dark quarters of urban slums and the government is likely to take it up in a major way to improve the lives of slum dwellers. Developed by a team of engineers in Kolkata, almost 300 units of the micro solar domes have been installed in three slums in Delhi, Kolkata, and Mumbai in the last one-and-a-half years. (Source: PIB.NIC)