Solar micro-grids are receiving increasing interest in the electrification in emerging economies. On-site performance studies of these systems have become more important as the global market is being supplied with an ever-greater variety of solar power equipment with inconsistent quality. We studied the reliability of seven small identical low-power DC solar grids installed in real settings in villages in rural northern India. A detailed analysis of measurement data, interviews and field visits over a whole year showed that solar electricity was available to the households for 87% of the time. Along with technical problems, a share of the power shortages was an indirect cause of an illegal behaviour of users. The study draws attention to quality recommendations for energy access for consumers with modest energy needs.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the Tiina and Antti Herlin Foundation, Finland, with a doctoral research grant for Sini Numminen (application rounds 2015 and in 2016), and by the Finnish Technology and Innovation Agency (TEKES) for funding the technical installations and travel costs through the New Global Project of Aalto University.
© 2018 Elsevier Ltd
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Energy Engineering and Power Technology