THANJAVUR: A group of college students and a Coimbatore-based startup have installed a solar-powered recharging station near Pattukkottai. The station has been set up at an estimated cost of Rs 1 lakh, and around 30 mobile phones and 30 rechargeable LED bulbs can be recharged at a time, in Ramakrishnapuram village in the district.
A week after Cyclone Gaja wreaked havoc in delta districts, a survey was conducted by ‘Climate Smart Technologies’ and students of Holy Cross college in Trichy which found that most of the villagers sought portable equipment to recharge their phones as electricity restoration in their hamlets might take at least a month.
Subsequently, PSG College in Coimbatore and other good Samaritans in Trichy funded to hire eight 2KW panels, inverter and batteries for making a portable solar-powered recharging station, which was designed on Wednesday. “We wanted to provide a sustainable solution for the cyclone-hit people so we decided to install a solar-powered charging station. An SHG in the village was appointed as the custodian, but the main objective is to promote renewable energy generation to reach even interior hamlets,” said Jeevanandhan Duraisamy, founder of Climate Smart Technologies.
Close to 400 people in the Ramakrishnapuram and Punalvasal villages are benefiting from the recharging station functioning for 8-10 hours.
While the solar panels that were hired will be taken back by the start-up and colleges involved, the battery units and inverter will be handed over to the SHG in the village. If any donor comes forward to sponsor solar panels, the start-up said that the village would get a permanent solar-powered portable recharging station.
Students involved in designing the portable solar-powered charging station added that authorities would be approached to install such models in every hamlet as part of disaster management measure.