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Friday, May 16, 2014

NAL to unveil wind solar hybrid system for remote hamlets

(Above) The main modules of wind solar hybrid system. (Below) Wind turbine undergoes tow test at HAL airport.
By Anantha Krishnan M
Express News Service
Bangalore: The National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL) is gearing up to launch a 500 W Wind Solar Hybrid System that can power standalone utilities including borewells, pumps and other light loads, especially in remote hamlets. Developed in partnership with the private firm Aparna Renewable Energy Source (ARES), the hybrid system promises to aid areas that are deprived of steady supply of power. 
NAL director Shyam Chetty told Express on Thursday that the solar system has been developed in line with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) mandate to focus on technologies relevant to societal missions. "The wind turbines from abroad are efficient only at higher speeds, which rarely occur in India. We developed the hybrid system at the Centre for Societal Missions and Special Technologies (CSMST). For CSIR-NAL, hybrid systems will be a thrust area to pursue in future for both rural and urban applications," Shyam said.
The system consists of five main modules including a wind turbine, solar photovoltaic unit, charge controller, outdoor control panel and a battery bank. "We have been exploring the application of aerospace technologies for exploiting renewable alternate sources of energy. We have developed a wide range of technologies related to wind turbines in the past decade which are akin to helicopter blades. Advanced carbon composite materials were used for the blades with the aim of minimising the environmental impact. Advanced research is on to switch over to natural fibres with higher degree of environmental friendliness," Shyam said. Each new system will cost around Rs 3 lakh and Rs 2 crore has been spent in the last four years as part of the development. 
During the development stage, NAL scientists simulated the entire range of wind speeds (3-15 metre per second) likely to occur while the system is in service, at HAL's airstrip in Bangalore. "This is an aerospace spin-off system as many advanced processes and materials have been already developed for various aircraft programmes. We have the expertise to develop more efficient wind turbines compared to those available in the Indian market. Cost effectiveness is key and we have already demonstrated it with the new hybrid system," says G N Dayananda, Chief Scientist, Head CSMST. He said NAL has already received encouraging responses from various renewable energy departments in North-East region. NAL scientists T H Samiullah and Kanaka Muthu played their respective roles in during the development of the system.
M Satyanarayana, CEO, ARES, said the market is flooded with Chinese turbines which are not suitable for Indian condition. "Our challenge was to develop wind turbine blades which could generate power at speeds of less than 5 meter per second. In South India, these systems can be used in areas such as Coorg, Chikmagalur, high ranges of Kerala and the Nilgiri belt in Tamil Nadu," says Satyanarayana.
Copyright@The New Indian Express

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