200 houses in Kolkata slum to get light from solar power

Kolkata, Feb 23 (IANS) Around 200 houses in a Kolkata slum will be lit up from Tuesday courtesy a portable rooftop gadget that uses solar power to generate light.

The brainchild of S.P. Gon Chaudhuri, an expert in renewable energy, the affordable technology works without photovoltaic cells.

“It has a dome-like structure that captures sunlight during the day. It will be placed on the rooftop and a concentrated zone of light (like a 100-watt bulb) will brighten up the usually dingy and dark interiors of these houses,” Gon Chaudhuri told IANS.

“The device which is a solar pipe has a special reflective coating,” he said clarifying the technology produces light not electricity.

He was requested by the West Bengal government to use his technology for the slums in Topsia in the north-east fringes of the city.

“Earlier I had applied the same technology at a lower scale in New Delhi and Kolkata. This is a major scale-up. The device is user friendly and requires no maintenance,” he said, adding the eight inches by 12 inches dome is priced at Rs. 475.”

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