You get to meet great people, you see creative products and services showcased to the world, you see networking happening, relationships are built with exchange of cards, business deals are signed etc.
I got a chance to visit Intersolar India 2013 in Mumbai, this week. Apart from the cool products and services, I was pleasantly surprised at the energy and enthusiasm shown by the various companies and the visitors.
There were conferences, trainings, stalls with products/services.
Everything told me that clean tech is here to stay and will soon power the world.
Solar radiation which we receive as heat and light can be converted to useful thermal energy or for production of electricity either through solar photovoltaic cells or via solar thermal ways. Availability of reliable solar radiation data is vital for the success of solar energy installations in different sites of the country.
The map on the right shows the average irradiance based on hourly estimates of radiation over 10 years. The data is generally obtained from observations from geostationary satellites. (Source - National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in cooperation with India's Ministry of New and Renewable Energy)
India is no doubt the most promising of the emerging market for Solar. With about 300 clear, sunny days in a year, India's theoretical solar power reception, on only the land area, is about 5000 Petawatt-hours per year (PWh/yr) (i.e. 5000 trillion kWh/yr or about 600 TW)
And trade shows like InterSolar India brings together the solar industry under one roof to take the industry to the next level.
And this is a good thing, there are various reports and studies about climate change. Even a 2 degree rise in global weather will lead to sea level rise and catastrophic problems for mankind. Hence if we want to limit our CO2 release in the atmosphere which is causing climate change, renewable energy and solar energy in particular will have to play an important role of mitigating the emission of greenhouse gases.
As per the Ministry of Renewable Energy (MNRE), Government of India, as of 2013, the state of Gujarat has a share of close to 60% of installed solar capacity. The state of Rajasthan, which has the highest solar irradiance in the country, follows with 30% installed capacity.
planned capacity of 590 MW.
Spread across 5,384 acres of unused land. The integrated “Solar Park” has state of art infrastructure with provision to harness rain water besides power evacuation at the door steps.
Lack of electricity infrastructure is one of the main hurdles in the development of rural India. Developments in cheap solar technology are considered as a potential alternative which could allow bypassing the need to install expensive, long-distance, centralized power delivery systems and yet bring cheap electricity to the masses.
Solar lamps and lanterns brings light at night to many villages in India. These typically replace kerosene lamps. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy is offering a 30% to 40% subsidy for the cost of lanterns, home lights and small systems.
Solar PV water pumping systems are used for irrigation and drinking water. A simple 1500W panel can power motors used in pumping systems. Thus this could be a boon to agriculture too.
Pune and Bangalore are two Indian cities which has made installation of solar water heaters in new buildings mandatory.
At the Intersolar exhibition, the most popular stalls were the companies selling residential, commercial power systems and solar lighting.
There was huge interest in solar lighting. I found that lots of corporate campuses and factories preferred solar lighting and were striking swift deals here.
Residential power systems too were in great demand. There were lots of companies selling power system packages which included Solar Panels, Charge Controllers (these are used to protect the battery), Batteries and Inverters (which is used to convert DC power from the Battery into AC power).
And these packages were flexible based on the load, necessity of energy storage (battery) etc.
There were other cool innovative products/services
- The world's first Solar UPS - from a company called Su-Kam Power Systems.
- PV Module Submersible Pump, which can pump water from a depth of 100 meters to the surface from Kosol Energie.
- Companies were selling power packs and portable kits.
- Battery Systems for the Solar Power Systems mostly comprised of Sealed Lead Acid batteries. I could not find any vendor using Lithium-Ion batteries yet. The prohibitive price of the lithium chemistry could be an issue.
- Various companies were selling thin film solar panels.
- Live training sessions provided by Solar Energy International (www.solarenergy.org), an American firm.
- Freiburg Green City, Germany, were sharing their experiences of sustainable energy management.
- Geonica, a company based out of Spain, were showcasing their Sun Power System, which was used for remote monitoring and efficiency analysis of solar power plants.
I found a company called Belifal (www.belifal.com)- based out of Mumbai - having an e-bike here at the expo!
Solar power and Electric Vehicles were meant for each other! And they will power the world in the near future.
This cute lil e-bike has a sealed lead acid battery and can go upto 40 km per charge.
Find out more here -www.ebikeinindia.in
I got back from Intersolar India 2013, with lots of material for me to read and understand the solar and renewable energy industry, I also networked and spoke to interesting people but most importantly i got back with a feeling of real optimism that someday the world will use the power of the sun to sustain humanity for centuries to come. This is just the beginning.