Solar Energy is a giant leap in the field of science which has enabled humans to produce clean energy. In this step I am going to give you a brief introduction into real economics, viability and applications of this Instructable.
Agriculture in developing nations isn't as efficient as it really should be. One of the main problems of agriculture is water management. Even developing nations which receive a good amount of water through rainfall fail to be efficient in the field of agriculture.
The initial investment of solar energy is high. Buts lets put it in a developing nation's agriculturists/farmers perspective. I have chosen my country India as the perfect example of the best beneficiary from the use of solar energy. EXAMPLE based on past experience:
The common farmer over here has to pay approximately Rs 50,000 to setup an electrical connection to his/her farm depending on how far the nearest village transformer/power distributor is from the farm. The farmer then has to buy a pump to irrigate his land which could cost the farmer between Rs 5,000 -35,000. The problem is in such areas Maintenance of Power lines is not carried out and there is high variation in the supplied voltage. This causes the pumps coil and windings to get damaged. This can lead to loss of efficiency or even total damage to the pump. Farmers who have batteries and inverters for their farms also suffer losses from the damage caused by voltage fluctuations to the inverters,etc. Therefore the farmer has to also spend additional revenue in buying replacement Pumps, inverters,etc.
Maintenance of the power lines has to be sometimes carried out by the farmer. Irregular power failures and power shortages causes major losses of agricultural output. Consider a 10 acre Cucumber crop plantation which should ideally yield a harvest of approximately 1000kg/day. Lets say due to a power outage, there is no power supplied to the farm for an entire day. This would lead to the crop not being watered for a day and could result in significant weight loss of the cucumbers. In country's such as India, farmers sell vegetables based on weight and hence any weight loss would result in significant losses. But all these problems can be solved by the implementation of a Solar Water Pump System.
In India, there are mainly two crops: Kharif(Monsoon Crops) & Rabi(Winter Crops). With the help of solar energy, I have been able to plant 4 different crops. i.e. 2 additional crops excluding the Kharif and Rabi crops. I have been able to irrigate a cucumber and watermelon crop in the middle of summer which also has significantly increased my profits from agriculture, something I wouldn't have been able to do without solar energy.
What about farmers belonging to developed nations?
Well apart from the above, farmers in developed nations can use solar energy for their sprinkler systems in their greenhouses. They can also use for artificial lighting to grow saplings. I have also seen a Solar water pump systems being used in poultry(chicken) applications to cool the sheds and provide drinking water to the poultry birds.
The solar water pump system can be used to pump drinking water in societies and buildings. The concept of 'Green Buildings' includes the use of solar water pump systems for the purpose of drinking water and other sanitary uses of water.
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