Micro-windmill lights up houses in Hassan district

Renewable energy has sorted the problem of power cuts

Gone are the days of load-shedding for the residents of Girimaradi, a nondescript village under Salgame hobli, in the taluk. They can also forget all about paying electricity bills. Thanks to the micro windmill installed in their village.

The long-pending project of the micro windmill became functional on June 26, ensuring uninterrupted power supply for domestic purposes of 13 houses, at a cost of just Rs 3 lakh. The then Zilla Panchayat president B R Sathyanarayana had appealed to Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Limited (KREDL) to sanction the windmill-cum-solar project for the village on an experimental basis.

The windmill has been installed at the highest point in the village, behind Harihareshwara temple. It is connected to two batteries of 200 AH capacity each and to a 1.5 kv UPS. There is a provision to connect two more batteries as the speed of the wind, at this point, is good. However, as a standby, two solar panels have been installed to ensure uninterrupted power supply.

At present, each house is fitted with two LED bulbs. There is a provision to increase the number of bulbs to four each. Power is also supplied to four temples, for lighting purpose, in the vicinity.

However, the residents have been asked not to operate electrical appliances till the capacity is increased by adding additional batteries.

Madhu, a resident, said, the villagers were happy as they need not spend the nights in the dark due to frequent power-cuts.

“The maintenance cost is negligible, but we have decided to pool in some money every month for maintenance,” he added.

Free power

Sathyanarayana said, if such projects were implemented in villages, free power could be supplied to houses. “Even in cities, if a person is constructing a two or three storeyed building, he can install a similar windmill and avail subsidy from government agencies. The government should also encourage such initiatives,” he said.

It has to be recalled that Sathyanarayana, during his term in the ZP, had dabbled with recharging  borewells in rural areas by implementing rainwater harvesting; installation of automatic switches for streetlights to save power and executed a project to produce biogas using wet waste in drainages.

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