The human race has remained dependent on the electrical energy for over a century, while continuously trying to find ways to turn any energy into electrical energy. We have used fossil fuels to power our lives for so long that it has thrown the planet off its natural balance. Green energy sources like solar, wave, and the wind energy proved to be the commercially viable solutions a long time ago, but these sources were never cheap enough to use. It has taken years to bring down the costs of green energy sources. Moreover, many people have opted to use solar power, at least as a partial energy source to power their houses. Google even released maps to show the solar potential of houses in Germany and the US.
While many of us in the developed parts of the world are blessed with electrical energy 24 hours, not everyone is that lucky! Many of the underdeveloped and developing parts of the world remain deprived of this basic necessity of life. India, the 7th largest country of the World by size and 2nd largest by population, has a huge chunk of its people drowned in darkness. Two siblings, on a mission to brighten up the entire country, have created AvantGarde Innovations, a startup which aims to provide electrical energy to the lower class of India.
The founders of Avant Garde Innovations, Arun and Anoop George from Kerala, have created a low-cost wind turbine capable of generating enough energy to power a house for a lifetime. The turbine, which is only the size of a ceiling fan, can potentially produce 5 kW every day at a minimal cost of $US750. The company’s website reads,
“Our goal is to eliminate energy poverty, reduce dependence on struggling state power grids and create energy self-sufficiency for all the needy ones through distributed, localized, and affordable renewable energy. In doing so, we believe we can collectively usher in our world a cleaner environment, new economic prosperity, and social change. Our first offering is a highly affordable small wind turbine suitable for residential, commercial, agricultural, village electrification and other uses, which is aimed for a market launch during 2016.”
India, being the world’s sixth largest consumer of energy, uses 3.4 percent of the global energy. The infrastructural cost required to power the entire country, particularly remote villages, is so high that the government is unable to bear it. To establish a country-wide system, millions of dollars investment is required, and Avant Garde aims to make things easier. Arun says in an interview with The Times of India that,
“When the small wind turbine is generating 1kW energy, it costs INR 3-7 lakh (US$4,000-10,000), our company plans to sell it at less than NR 50,000 (about US$750). Costs will decrease further through mass production.”
The pilot project of the company was launched at a church in the city of Thiruvananthapuram in January. Arun says that the prototype developed by Avant Garde is scalable for capacities up to 300 kW and even higher.
Avan Garde Wind Turbine has landed in the Top 20 Cleantech Innovations in India while the company has snagged a spot in the top 10 clean energy companies of the country under the “UN Sustainable Energy For All” initiative. The Global Wind Energy Council ranks India as 4th in the installed wind power capacity. If the Avant Garde power project becomes successful, India might come out of its energy crisis and move towards a prosperous country at a faster pace.
A good step towards cost-effective energy sources!