Now, solar energy can power your AC and fridge too!
Making a marked departure from the conventional system, a Chennai-based company provides a comprehensive system that ensures that a 2 kW solar panel can power a 1.5 tonne air conditioner, one 300 litre refrigerator, five fans, five LED tube lights (4 feet in length and 16 watts each) and eight LED bulbs (6 watts each) during the day.There are many innovative systems that make this possible.In lieu of silicon crystalline panels that are routinely used, Basil Energetics Pvt Ltd uses thin film solar panels. Though efficiency of thin film panel is the same as silicon panel at 25 degree C, the energy yield of thin film is higher than silicon panel.“This is because power rating is done at 25 degree C. In India, the outside temperature far exceeds 25 degree C, especially during summer. And for every 1 degree C increase in temperature, the loss in power rating is 0.5 per cent in the case of silicon panels; it is only 0.25 per cent with thin films. So 5 per cent more energy output is achieved by thin film panels,” said Dr. R. Ramarathnam, Chairman of Basil Energetics. “Solar panels need light not heat. That’s why they are more efficient in higher latitudes.”Another advantage with the thin film panel is that unlike silicon panels where power production gets completely cut off even if a small part of the panel is covered by shade, only that part of the thin film panel that is not exposed to sunlight stops producing power.Basil Energetics also manufactures electrical appliances that run on both direct current (D/C) and alternating current (A/C). The driver circuitry designed by Basil and more efficient motors manufactured by the company are used in the air conditioner, refrigerator and fan. Also, the refrigerator and air conditioner use a motor that runs on a variable speed compressor. “Our fans consume only 20 watts [normal fans need 75 watts] and a 1.5 tonne air conditioner requires only 1,200 watts initially and then run at 250-260 watts. The average consumption is only 333 watts, while normal air conditioners always need 1,650 watts,” he said. “Our refrigerators consume only 40 watts, while conventional ones consume 150 watts.”