There is a rapidly growing demand for electricity in Nepal, outstripping increases in generation capacity. The result is unreliable power to domestic and commercial customers, leading to frequent power outages. Redundancy against these power cuts is currently most often covered by diesel generators, which generate pollutants and are expensive.
Swanbarton is leading the GRIPS project alongside HIT Power Limited, Scene Connect, Gham Power Nepal and Practical Action Consulting Nepal. This project, funded by Innovate UK, aims to help overcome these issues in three ways:
Develop a prototype inverter capable of automatic islanding, providing UPS services during power outages.
Develop software and power system control hardware to manage the battery and on-site renewables.
Configure and install a 100kW battery and appropriately sized solar array with the prototype inverter and control systems at a test location in Nepal.
This demonstrator will be trialed over six months. During this time, the local energy network will be monitored to ensure the system does not harm the local users.
Core to this project is the concept of social inclusion. We seek to increase the role of women and all marginalised groups into the PV and battery workforce while transferring knowledge into local businesses.
The project is part funded by Innovate UK as part of the Energy Catalyst Program, supported by FCDO, UKRI, and UK aid.