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Solar Powered LED Streetlights - Abdullah Village - UC 8 Maripur, Karachi

July 5, 2006

Prepared by:

Shahid Siddique
Manager Engineering
Shaan technologies Export Processing Zone Karachi

Acknowledgment:
I am indebted to Mr. Shahid Khan CEO Indus Earth, Mr. Shamim Hassan Field Engineer Indus Earth, Kereem, Wahid Baloch, Akram and other residents of village who gave us full support during installation work. I also would like to acknowledge contribution of Mr. Shamim for the assistance in preparation of this report.

Shahid Siddique
Light is hope; each day at dawn it brings colors in life. To wait for the sun to rise before able to see would be a terrible thing today. The people who discovered fire used it to light rooms at night. Those who could afford it used candles. Later, fuel kerosene was used in special lamps. As time passed, an illuminating gas provided light in the homes and on the streets. Finally, electricity came along and now it is largest energy source for artificial light.

In developing countries millions of peoples are still living without electricity. Electrification of remote areas requires huge investment. Poor economy does not allow governments to provide electricity to maximum population. In this scenario, Alternative energy like solar power is best and comparatively low cost solution.

There are thousands of villages in Pakistan today whose inhabitants live in the dark and have been without electricity for centuries. In Pakistan few organizations and entrepreneurs are working for changing life in less privileged areas and poverty alleviation. They can use Solar energy as one effective tool for this purpose.

This article is all about a solar powered lighting project that can be presented as an example. This project was started by a Pakistani NGO “Indus Earth Trust” with the help of funding organization and manufacturer of Solar Lighting system.


“ Abdullah Village” that is situated 18 Kilometers from Maripur, Karachi was selected for this project. Village is around 300 years old. There are 160 huts in village. Population of the village is near about 1500 peoples in which majority of peoples are females and children. Profession of most of the people is fishing. Man spends weeks for fishing in deep sea. Women cut wood from forest and then sold to earn money for their families. They make grass matt and Rallies (A patched cloth matt) in spare time.

Village has one primary school. Health facilities are not available in the area so people travel quite long.

Due to coastal area underground water is not suitable for human consumption. Another source of water that they are using is 1.5 kilometer away from the village.

Mr. Lodhie President, “Ledtronics Inc. USA” has been testing solar-powered LED lighting, village LED street lighting and solar powered water pumps in different locations of Pakistan in association with the NRSP, one of the best and most accountable and effective NGOs in Pakistan.

In 2004 Mr. Pervaiz Lodhie demonstrated his solar LED home lighting system before Shahid Khan CEO Indus Earth trust for his projects. After getting detailed requirements & feedback from Indus Earth Trust, he designed and proposed present Solar System for streetlights and home lighting system for rural areas.

Both home & streetlight systems were designed in Ledtronics Inc Los Angeles. Shaan Technologies assembled and tested all units in manufacturing facility at Export processing zone Karachi. Shaan Technologies also gave technical support in terms of poles and solar panel mounting frame designs as well as installation of the units.

Night of 27th April 2006 is one of the happiest nights for the residents of Abdullah village when after a very hot sunny day they first time saw the cool and bright LED solar lights on the pathways around their homes that were brightening the streets like moonlight.

In first Phase, Shaan Technologies Installed 13 out of 15 Solar Streetlights in various parts of the village. Technical staff of Indus Earth installed the remaining 2 units. In second phase 10 more units will be installed.

These lights cover area of 20 ft and gives1.8-2 fc illumination at ground level. For each light, 198 high intensity Light emitting diodes are used. A 25 watt solar panel charges one 12 volt 18Ah sealed lead acid battery.

System is equipped with a smart charge controller that protects battery, from overcharging. It also disconnects power to lamp when battery voltage drops to a preset level. These smart protections significantly increase battery life.

In June 2006 Shaan Technologies also installed a solar cell phone charger in one hut on trial. This unit is designed for Nokia and Samsung cell phone but can be used for other brands using compatible connectors.

These lights changed our lives. We started a new life, we get to gather under the light & enjoy the cool nights after hot days Akram a fisherman told.

Women of the village are very happy. We cleaned and leveled the area near the lights where we make mats, sew garments, wash cloths and discuss matter of interest, Mai Hawwa wife of head of the village said.

Now my family dines in this light; my kids read and complete their homework, a woman told.

There are many women here that are very good embroiderer; now they are working late night. These lights are also helping them for earning more money.

Abdul Kareem, head of the village told that peoples in this village are very poor. There are many peoples in the village that can’t buy kerosene for using in lanterns. These solar lights are a blessing for us. Due to these lights incidents of snake and scorpions bit has been significantly decreased. Now our cattle are safe from theft at night. We are very grateful to all who did this wonderful work for us he added.
Please click here to see the event photos

Shaantech

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