PV for developing countries

Integrated PV and storage off-grid energy system for households in developing countries

Project description

Rapid developments in technology and cost reduction have made PV systems (and therefore electricity) more accessible in places where this was previously not possible. Non-electrified communities in developing nations perhaps value this change the most. While small PV based products (sub 10W) have been popularly commercialized recently, owning large PV systems (several 100W) is still an elusive dream for people with limited buying power. Therefore, a solution would be explored through this project that integrates PV, storage and delivers DC/AC output for powering appliances in a way that it enables people to use electricity in an affordable manner.

A system design for chosen power ratings will be sought after such that it provides satisfactory performance at the lowest costs. As the off-grid PV System cost is mainly driven by the battery, strong emphasis will be laid on minimal sizing and optimal utilization of the battery. The integrated power electronics will be designed so as to maintain a healthy battery life, reduce the size and use minimal conversion stages. Power management options including load prioritizing etc. will also be explored. The driving figure of merit for the system design would be the system costs.

The primary target countries to be considered are South Africa, India and Cambodia.

By implementing this technology, it will be possible for the 1000 to 3000 USD income bracket in the target developing nations to be provided with basic electricity needs. 

Nishant Narayan

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