Digital solar power

Within the metropolis of Hyderabad Young Software engineer Sandeep Menon, 25, was first exposed to the concept of solar panels on rooftops in an apartment building which was owned by a mutual friend.

“Normally when looking for an apartment, we look at the rent, location and basic amenities,” the man said to his Thomson Reuters Foundation by phone.

“But the green energy access may soon make it to the list. In the meantime digital solar is helping bridge the gap. It’s a good start for those who would like to change their technology.”

Menon invested an initial amount that was 15000 Indian rupees ($196) and is able to save around 1,000 rupees per quarter on his electric bills for an entire 15 years.

Within six months of being launched using seed capital from an investment fund for fintech, SundayGrids sold out its 5-kilowatt (KW) initial phase of the project. It is now launching a new tranche of 100-200 KW that will generate more power.

Customers also have to pay an on-boarding cost, while those who host the panels are charged for the solar power energy generated at their facilities however, this is cheaper than traditional grid electricity.

“We are tying up with more solar installers and also hosts or people who have ample space to set up rooftop solar panels,” Samuel explained.

From shopping malls, to schools, hospitals and industrial hubs Samuel as well as his staff look for hosts and make deals with installers to install and keep the panels.

They also sign contracts with electricity companies that reduce customer bill prices in exchange for credit.

Rising demand

It is the Tata Power Company Limited, an integrated energy company based in India is now one of the largest players in the sector of rooftop solar with the CEO Praveer Sinha declaring that it is the only option for them to “get away” from large coal power stations.

It provides an all-in-one service to set solar panels for rooftops, utilizes satellite images to evaluate the capacity of rooftops on an area and also maintains the panels.

The company is working on small film sheets that could be fixed to a surface to produce solar power.

“We are also working on a do-it-yourself solar power-generating kit that will allow individuals to set up on their own,” Sinha stated The company was exploring the possibility of offering panels with different colours than blue.

Tata has seen a huge response from its customers who have benefited from its one-stop service, he added and urged for greater finance options as well as tighter regulations to prevent “fly-by-night” operators.

Scherfler, an expert in the power industry, said it was the job of the government to set up regulations and market conditions that encourage people to utilize green energy sources.

The government has already provided the government with a grant of up to 40 percent for solar panels on rooftops, and this year, it has simplified processes to make installation simple.

To encourage people to invest in solar panels for their rooftops It is establishing an online portal that allows residents to sign-up and announcing that they will be approved within the next 15 days.

It also has been adamant about the prompt implementation of net-metering systems and the distribution of approved vendor lists , and the creation of a complaints procedure.

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