According to reports, with the summer heat turned on, every household in the city gears up to take on an additional burden in its electricity bill because of the ubiquitous cooler. One could save this extra expenditure by investing in a cooler that runs on solar power.
City-based entrepreneur Avinash Jadhav has come up with a cooler that can run on direct current generated by the solar cells. The entire set up consists of three components – a solar panel, a driver and a battery – that can also be attached to any other cooler. Like all inventions, this one also had its roots in necessity. “I saw that the villages nearby had 10 to 12 hours of load-shedding while urban areas went 3 to 4 hours without electricity each day. Our region is within the Tropic of Cancer and receives abundant sunlight. This natural resource, however, has remained untapped for long due to lack of awareness and willingness to take it up,” said Jadhav.
The biomedical engineer, who is a habitual innovator, was awarded the Bharat Vikas Ratna in 2009 for his innovations like a compact anaesthesia machine. The setup that Jadhav has used with the cooler has the capacity of 100 watts. The panel’s size can be extended for increasing the output. The driver acts as a stabilizer and point of distribution from which multiple plugs can be attached to operate multiple devices. “I have been using the system in my on house to connect LED lights, fan, cooler and even TV with it. It has significantly brought down my electricity bill,” said Jadhav.
Another problem that gets solved by his system is that of people, especially kids, getting electric shock because of coolers. “Every summer there are many cases in Nagpur. Since this system uses DC power, there is no chance of that happening,” he said. The driver has been so programmed that it will utilize the input from solar panel and switch to battery when there is not enough sun or at night. When even battery is exhausted, it automatically switches to regular AC grid supply. Also, it minimizes water usage by automatically turning off the pump every 10 minutes.
He believes that if all households in the city, and even alternate traffic lights utilized solar power, there would be no reason for us to face load-shedding at all.