Innovation: Means to light up the streets, homes on solar

Research has shown that amongst 10 Nigerian homes or organisations, 9 are powered on generator, while those on direct supply of power, work hard to pay electricity bills. Meanwhile, an inventor, Engr Addingi Terfa has revealed plans to impact solar knowledge on Nigerians. BINTA SHAMA reports.

Today, generator has become man’s best friend in Nigeria to the extent that some people feed their generator set to produce light when it is dark, rather than feeding their stomachs with a well deserved meal and thus, getting used to lack of electricity in the country.

Egnr.  Addingi Terfa is a founder, designer, and inventor of exceptional skills. According to him, 6 years ago, he received the divine vision to create 40 products that would impact the lives of 40 million people which he started on a few products already .This can be found on his website but says it is certainly a task for a multitude of his kind.

According to him, this year, he would present an opportunity for willing individuals to be impacted with skills in a training with the theme: ‘A generation of inventors: Let’s Build this Nation together,’ by having a mentoring sessions of both young and adult like persons for free every weekend in Abuja.

His passion and zeal to see that Nigeria advances and become the giant of Africa, has made him to come forth with the idea to play the role of a philanthropist in the world of science.

“This year as I mark my birthday, I will like to start a mentoring Programme, to tutor, train, impact and equip, as many people as the Lord will enable me with the skill for computer aided design, digital manufacturing techniques and mechatronics.”

Sometime back, Terfa designed an artificial tree popularly known as the Eko Tree, standing 60fts high, as the tallest arts installation in Nigeria.

Description of the design using solar

The EKO Tree, is an artificial metal tree standing 60fts high, presently the tallest art installation in Nigeria. The project was commissioned by the Lagos State Government in the celebration of its 50years anniversary.

The EKO Tree was designed with a capacity to generate 4,000kw of electricity per year through its Solar system. A tree is installed in the garden of the Lagos State Governor’s office.

The project consumed over 60 tonnes of recycled steel, in an effort to be environmentally friendly.

The origin of solar

Solar energy has been used in various ways since the 7th century BC. The history of solar energy is an interesting story. The sun’s rays were amplified and used to create fire. In the third century B.C. the Greeks and Romans used ‘burning mirrors’ to light torches for religious purposes. It has been said that in the 2nd century B.C. Archimedes used the reflective properties of brass to set fire to Roman ships attacking Syracuse. By the 6th century A.D. sunrooms on houses became popular. Justinian Code initiated ‘sun rights’ to ensure individual access to the sun.

Benefits of the use of solar

Solar panels are one of the most popular forms of generating energy for your home. It’s renewable, clean, and reliable, making it a very desirable choice. However, many still wonder how much electricity a solar panel can produce. While a lot of this can be down to specific conditions and the type of solar panel used, there are some general criteria that can help give you a rough estimate.

Amount of energy solar panel produces

Generally speaking, a 3kw or 4kw solar panel array will be able to produce enough energy to power a home containing a family of four or five people. A 2kw or 3kw array, on the other hand, will be able to supply enough energy to power a smaller home. A 4kw system will, on average, generate around 3,400kwh of electricity per year. When we break that down, we can see that it is enough to provide:

‘4,857 hours of the washing machine

‘97,143 hours of the fridge

‘1,880 hours of boiling the kettle

‘1,417 hours of the oven

Of course, every solar panel array is different, and so it can be tricky to determine exactly how much energy yours will generate. So here are some of the basic facts for the average, domestically used, solar panel system.

‘Domestic systems tend to range from 1 kilowatt (kW) to 5kW in size.

‘A 1kw system can produce around 850kw per year, a 2kw system 1,700lw per year, and a 5kw system 4,500kw per year.

The Energy Saving Trust (EST) estimates that a typical three-bedroom home in the UK will use just over 3,000kw per year. So, a 4kw or 5kw system would cover this. However, the Feed-in Tariff pays the highest rates for systems smaller than 4kW.

Latest cost of solar panel

There are many factors when looking at the cost of solar panels. These include: the type of solar panels installed, the size of the system, your type of property and which way the roof faces, and maybe more obviously the quality of the panels and components (such as the inverter) used.

Over recent years the solar industry has grown and changed, and as a result solar panels have become much more affordable. The savings on your electricity bill alone are an attractive reason to consider solar energy, but regardless of cost and money made, they are a great source of renewable energy and will undoubtedly lower your carbon footprint.

Solar panels will always be a long-term investment and the initial solar panel costs can seem high however the price of solar is now 70% cheaper than previous years.

According to recent analysis, that the price of a system is now far more affordable (and continues to fall).

Electricity and gas bills will only ever go up now so a solar panel system for your home or business will help insulate you from these rising costs that are completely outside your control.

Terfa’s passion is to see the nation brighten up to avoid  robbery, rape and kidnap amongst other things that are threats to humanity.

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