Officials of the Non-conventional and Renewable Energy Development Corporation of Andhra Pradesh Limited (NREDCAP) in Krishna district are a cheerful lot.A steady rise in the number of people in the domestic sector switching over to use of solar energy for their electricity needs has brought a smile on their faces. In the wake of a revised subsidy on installation of solar plants in the domestic category, the number of roofs fitted with solar panels designed to absorb the sun’s heat as a source of energy for generating electricity, are on the rise.
“From May this year, we have been able to enrol 81 beneficiaries. So far, we have installed 54 units of on-grid solar system and most of them are in Sitapuram colony near Poranki,” said K. Srinivasa Rao, Krishna District Manager of NREDCAP.In the wake of a rapid rise in demand for electricity, development of solar cities is seen as the most viable proposition.It is designed to encourage local governing bodies to prepare a road map to guide their cities in becoming ‘renewable energy hubs’ or ‘solar cities’.
The Andhra Pradesh government is keen on switching mode and embracing the latest technologies and sustainable energy resources that can help further the dream of Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu to establish a world class capital. As part of it, the Vijayawada Municipal Corporation (VMC) is aggressively promoting grid-connected solar rooftop systems in government buildings.“Almost 96 per cent of the electricity needs of the VMC’s main building and the Council hall are met by the solar panels installed on top which generate 800 units of power per day. The Corporation benefits by Rs. 2 a unit per day,” said Mr. Srinivasa Rao, informing that many residents in the Sitapuram colony have opted for 2-kw, 3-kw or 5-kw units for residential purpose.
A 5-kw solar plant generates 20 units of electricity per day, he said explaining that the Corporation had also provided a Wi-Fi link to the consumers to keep them abreast of the day-to-day data of power generation, consumption and import and export through the solar plants.
Very little maintenance
Solar panels generally require very little maintenance since there are no moving parts. The panels should be inspected for any dirt or debris that may collect on them over a period, said Mr. Srinivasa Rao.