According to reports, students and teachers of Ramaratnam Nursery and Primary School in Mylapore have not had to bear the brunt of power cuts for almost one year, all thanks to the solar power plant installed on the roof of the building.
The school housed in the Madras Sanskrit College has installed an ‘On Grid’ type solar plant in which electricity produced during the day is directly converted into AC power and distributed to the electricity grid of Tangedco. S. Harish, CEO, Future Renewable Energy Infrastructure Private Limited, said under the ‘on grid’ system, the solar power produced could not be stored like the ‘off grid’ system, where it could be stored in a battery. The former was suggested to the school authorities because the school functions during day time. Also, the ‘on grid’ system is 30 per cent cheaper than the ‘off grid’ system.
The 7 Kilo Watt (KW) solar power plant, including the inverter, cost Rs. seven lakh (including the subsidy of Rs. 2 lakh) with the school likely to recover the investment within seven years, Mr. Harish added. The solar power plant has not only helped the school authorities deal with power cuts, but has also brought down power consumption by 30-40 per cent.
Subramaniam, manager of the school, said the institution, which used to previously consume an average of 2,500 units in two months managed to save around 1,000 units after the plant was installed.
B. Madhavan, a trustee of the school, said the solar plant was installed mainly to ensure students’ comfort. He said by going solar, the school was also able to fulfil its social responsibility.
Going by the success of the solar power plant installed in the school, the trustees of the Madras Sanskrit College have proposed to install an off-grid system on its premises.