Indian technology company SunMoksha has developed a Smart NanoGrid system to power its first smart village in Chhotkei, Orissa State.
A $14.5bn flagship smart cities programme has been launched by the Indian government, but Ashok Das, founder of SunMoksha says the issue of remote villages was not addressed fast enough with around 200 million people living off-grid.
In Das’s view, the challenge in remote villages is that there is no follow up to the installation of high-end green energy equipment and the systems eventually stop working, and that is why he created a smart grid technology enabling a whole village’s electrical infrastructure to be monitored from afar.
Ashok Das says: “Changing consumer behaviour in a big city is a major problem… It will take decades to build smart cities, but I can get thousands of smart villages done in that time.”
A 30KW solar infrastructure was installed to power the village with sensors and meters to check the energy usage and monitor the system health. Data is then sent to SunMoksha’s cloud-based monitoring system to enable the remote managing of supply and demand.
The villagers’ consumption is also monitored in order to avoid the overloading of the grid, and they can check it themselves thanks to an app and Wi-Fi hotspots.
Upendra Tripathy said: “I’ve seen plenty of microgrids, but the combination of technology in this village is a first… It’s the integration and the remote monitoring. That’s where they’ve done wonders.”
A similar technology could be applied in the future to water consumption and environmental factors related to agriculture, in order to make the villages really smart.
Mr Das also identified that the smart grid acts as a catalyst in the village and could pose a huge potential in other aspects of life.