Category: Residential Generation
In Peru, 30% of the population is without electricity and beyond the reach of a viable grid. To address this, the Peruvian government is embarking on an ambitions and unprecedented rural electrification program—the largest off-grid project on the planet, with some half million renewable energy systems planned. The first phase involves 175,000 homes and 3,000 community buildings, and will provide electricity to almost one million Peruvians.
The plan calls for three different solar powered energy centers: two higher capacity versions for clinics, schools and community centers, and a high-volume residential Energy Box sized for individual homes. This is a complete, self-contained turnkey energy solution consisting of a pole-mounted solar panel and enclosed, integrated charge controller/battery system feeding house wiring and lighting for a safe, home-friendly electricity source. This solar rural electrification project is being supplied and installed by Tozzi Green of Italy, who provides the systems at no cost to Peruvian homeowners through an arrangement with the government. Pennsylvania-based Morningstar Corporation is a partner in the project, manufacturing the charging system and enclosure.
The end users for this project had no previous experience with electricity or solar powered battery systems. In order to assist with user education of energy management, and maintain the desired battery life, Morningstar worked with Tozzi Green to develop software to optimize the daily energy usage, enough for two 10W lamps for 10 hours per day. When coupled with the LED battery gauge, the users can learn to better manage their available battery energy and prolong the system life. Future designs can be customized for user needs including data logging capabilities as well as the consumption based energy management. The ability to provide cell phone charging is a huge benefit.
To meet the five-year rural electrification goal, the Government of Peru imposed a tight delivery schedule. Morningstar completed the final design and manufacture of the first 2,300 custom units within 90 days of contract signing, and delivered the initial 50,000 units within six months.
John White– Senior Account Manager, Morningstar Corporation