SELCO India provides affordable energy solutions for rural customers. The following photos are of some of theri customers in the Mangalore and Udupi area of Karnataka.
Typical installation in rural areas consist of a single panel mounted on the roof that collects enough sunlight to power 4 lights for 4 hours in the evening.
The solar panel is connected via a voltage regulator to a battery for charging during the day. At night, the battery provides direct current for the home.
In a typical rural house, the DC wiring supplies electricity to 4 fluorescent lights and electrical outlet to plug in a portable radio, the only entertainment in most homes.
One small light on the porch lights up the doorway at night.
My guide, Pravin, a SELCO technician, makes a house call while we visit one of his customers. SELCO emphasizes customer service and responsiveness. In some cases these lights represent additional livelihood for their customers.
The staff of SELCO’s Kundapur office pose for a group photo.
A short distance outside of Udupi, this hamlet is completely off the electric grid. The only light is from the SELCO solar panel. This enterprising family makes ‘beedis’ in the additional light.
In the morning, before dawn, the family rolls out ‘parathas’ under the light of the fluorescent bulb and later sell them to the local restaurants. The lights have enabled the family to add to their meager income.
At night, vegetable vendors at the local market illuminate their wares with solar powered lanterns. The lanterns are provided by another enterprising villager who rents them out to each vendor, collecting them each night to recharge and drops them off the following evening at the market.
The next day we went around a number of urban installations. SELCO has installed lights at churches, schools and temples.
A solar powered light provides illumination in the chapel.
Solar powered streetlights illuminate the temple tank at the main Shree Veeranjaneya Gudi temple in Mangalore.
A set of panels on the roof power all the lights in the temple.
SELCO technicians install a system at one of the other temples in the Temple Square area of Mangalore.