CSIR-CMERI installs world’s largest solar tree in West Bengal

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NEW DELHI: The world’s largest solar tree has been developed and installed in West Bengal’s Durgapur by the Central Mechanical Research Institute (CMERI), under the Centre for Science and Industrial Research (CSIR). Installed at CSIR-CMERI Residential Colony, Durgapur, the solar trees can produce a peak power of over 11.5 kilo watt peak (KWp).

Professor Harish Hirani, Director, CSIR-CMERI, while explaining about the technology, said that the power of the installed solar tree is above 11.5 KWp and has the capacity to produce 12,000-14,000 units of Clean and Green Power annually. The design of the Solar tree is such that each solar photovoltaic (PV) panel receives optimal exposure to sunlight and also least amount of shadow area is created beneath. Each tree contains a total of 35 solar PV panels with a capacity of 330 watt peak (Wp) each. Energy generation data can be tracked either in real time or on a regular basis.

The solar tree, in addition to being the world’s largest, also has a number of customized features for use in different locations. The solar trees have been built to guarantee a minimum shadow area, thus potentially making these solar trees available for expanded use in agriculture, such as high-capacity pumps, e-Tractors, and e-Power Tillers, said Professor Hirani.

The cost for each solar tree would be Rs 7.5 lakh and they will have the capacity to incorporate Internet of Things (IOT)-based features, such as round-the-clock CCTV monitoring in agricultural fields, real-time humidity, wind speed, prediction of rainfall and sensors for soil analysis. In comparison to energy generated through fossil fuels, the solar trees have the ability to save 10-12 tons of carbon dioxide emissions released as greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. In addition, the extra power produced can be added into the energy grid.

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