Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Gadhia - Solar Cooking System Major

The current boom in solar technology manufacturing in India is epitomized by companies like Solar Semiconductor - set-up by US-based NRIs, with a base in the US, working with cutting-edge solar PV technologies with an eye as much on the international market as on the Indian one. But India already has a significant solar power culture in the cooking and heating arena, and at the forefront of that revolution were companies like Gadhia.

Gadhia Solar Energy Systems was founded by the Gadhia couple when they returned to India in 1988 from Germany with the German Scheffler cooker. Though the Scheffler cooker was a wonderful application of solar power, the Gadhias felt they had to change the product to better suit the Indian market.

"First there should be local components as far as possible, second, made with local skills and third operate it with people who did not know much about science and physics. So that's why had to modify," Deepak (Gadhia). >>Link

Last year, in a project sponsored by an Austrian NGO Gadhia supplied solar cookers to all 36 families in Bysanivaripalle a village 125 km northwest of Tirupati. As a result, "The village saves 72 tonnes of firewood, or 5,832 kg of LPG, cutting carbon dioxide emissions to the tune of 104 tonnes a year".

The company is now promoting Solar Steam Cooking Systems which they have already installed at the Shirdi and Tirupati temples. "Gadhias are also looking at applications like crematoriums and cooling plants in hospitals and hotels...", as well as, "applications like drinking water from sea water, desalination, food processing, waste water evaporation".

While the oncoming PV boom would be a great sign for India, including for the rural masses, there will always be a market for efficient applications of solar technologies like the Scheffler systems.