Smart Solar Box for India

Environmentally friendly air conditioning of classrooms

Environmentally friendly air conditioning of classrooms
The solar box can be controlled via an app.

fortiss scientists have shown students from the fields of electrical engineering, renewable energy systems and computer science how a small, decentralized energy supply unit can be built with common components and low costs. The resulting smart solar box now supplies a village school in Madikonda, India (Telangana state, southern central India) with environmentally friendly electricity.

Until recently, the school had no power supply and can now air-condition its classrooms in an environmentally friendly way. The solar box consists of a motorcycle battery, a solar charge controller and a Raspberry PI, a tiny computer the size of a credit card. A photovoltaic module is connected to it. The core is an energy management system developed by fortiss. The material costs amount to about 300 EUR.

The box, which can be controlled via app, was built by students under the guidance of fortiss experts who work on software architectures for critical infrastructures. "It was important for us to show that a pragmatic solution can be created with technical know-how and low costs", explains project manager Venkatesh Pampana, who built the box in the Indian school Sri Vidyaranya Awasam. From now on about 20 children can learn without stress.

"The advantage of the smart solar box is that the components can be bought and set up much cheaper locally. The training of the experts can also take place on site. In addition, conventional diesel generators can be replaced," reports the computer scientist.