Solar Power Makes An Impact at Mumbai Suburban Stations Now

Even as utility, and even rooftop solar continues to have a somewhat bumpy journey in India, distributed solar continues to make progress. Now, 15 stations on the Western Line of Mumbai’s suburban train system have got a special solar powered facility.

mobile charging with solarA solar powered phone charging system. These 100% solar powered systems can charge upto 8 phones at a time, and 100 during the day. The Western Railway division of Indian railway, which manages this line, has provided the facility free of cost to its users, available 24X7.

The panels for the charging kiosks  have been mounted on the station rooftops, with an LCD display on the ground giving  real-time information on the solar power generated, CO2 saved and battery status.

Starting from Churchgate station, to Grant Road, Mumbai Central, Lower Parel, Dadar, Santacruz, Andheri (W), Kandivali (W), Borivali (E), Borivali (W), Vasai (W), Nallasopara (W), Virar, Boisar and Palghar have been provided this for now. Another 5 stations are in line to get the facility soon.

The facility, while bound to be welcomed by commuters in the city, where over 4 million of them use the western line train services every day. Thus, chances are, a single kiosk at every station will probably be too little, even if a good start. One also hopes that the central Railways managed central line and the Harbour line also move quickly to emulate the western railways in the initiative.

The company that has partnered on this initiative is Mumbai-based Funsolar , a not for profit firm focused on delivering solutions based on renewables. The firm seems to be focused on a CSR led model of products that can be installed in public places. Its an interesting option taken up by quite a  few firms in the space,particularly when it comes to distributed solar products, which seek to bring energy access to the poorest, or in public spaces.

According to Shri Ravinder Bhakar – Chief Public Relations Officer of Western Railway, the cost of each of these kiosks is Rs 1 lakh, but these have been provided to the railways under a CSR programme. He did not specific the name of the corporate .

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Prasanna Singh

Prasanna Singh

Prasanna has been a media professional for over 20 years. He is the Group Editor of Saur Energy International

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