A very special expedition began at the start of May 2014 in the mountain landscape of the Himalayas. KACO new energy off-grid experts erected a PV array with a storage system for the Lo Kunphen Medical School in Lo Manthang; the first of its kind at an altitude of almost 4000 metres.
The blueplanet gridsave eco 5.0 TR1 battery inverter functions as the heart of the system. AC-coupled, and combined with a solar PV inverter, it allows solar power to be stored in an external battery for later use. As soon as the energy from the battery is drawn again, the blueplanet gridsave eco 5.0 TR1 establishes a stable, 1-phase building network, ensuring 24-hour solar supply. The 6.5 kW power from the PV system and a battery capacity of 15 kWh ensure the classrooms and dormitories are illuminated.
Thanks to teamwork and extensive preparation, the eight participants of the expedition completed the system on schedule in less than a week. The modules and frame were transported onto the roof of the school by rope. Battery inverter, solar PV inverter and AC control system were suspended from a special mounting panel with a solid pedestal; the clay walls wouldn‘t have supported the weight otherwise.
Before the expedition left, the residents of Lo Manthang received in-depth training in how to use the system. The display of the blueplanet gridsave eco 5.0 TR1 proved helpful here, as it provides detailed information about the system status at a glance. Since the beginning of May last year, the system has run in full operation without any problems: a sign that the components were well chosen for harsh ambient conditions. They survived the bumpy journey unscathed and also continued to work after the devastating earthquake in Nepal in April 2015. More importantly, however; we are delighted to report that no one was severely injured in Lo Manthang.
The system proves that photovoltaics presents the right solution for the energy needs of people far from well-built power grids: robust, almost maintenance free, no costs for fossil fuels and no emissions.
The Lo Manthang Team:
Jörg Mangold (President and founder of ARAGUA e.V.)
Johannes Löser, Leonie Löser, Susanne Klimke (ARAGUA e.V.)
Dorko Eliaszewskyj (KACO new energy): Technical Leadership
Moendal Arabinda, Ghosal Rajaram (galileosolar): Installation
Ines Bresler: Journalist
Are you planning to combine a residential or small commercial PV plant with a storage system? Let us know your requirements. Email us at sales(at)kaco-newenergy.de or call +49 7132 3818-333.