As part of a college project to make uninterrupted power supply in the two reading rooms at the College of Science and Technology (CST) more advanced, four final year electrical engineering students are installing a 10kW rooftop photovoltaic (PV) system in the college.

This renewable energy system, which will add to the existing 12.5kW that the college installed in 2015, is being tried for the first time at the college.

Project guide, Tshewang Lhendup (PhD), said students designed the whole system. The students will monitor the system and analyse performance until they graduate in June this year.

Tshewang Lhendup added that the additional power supply would be useful in peak summer when power supply is erratic.

The college will introduce postgraduate course in renewable energy beginning the new academic session, which is expected to provide students with useful data and study materials.

Department of Renewable Energy (DRE) under the economic affairs ministry donated 168 panels that were reclaimed from rural areas.

Project Coordinator Manoj Sharma, who is a lecturer at CST, said that solar panels, which can last 25 years, were used for eight years. “They were tested and repaired.”

One of the students, Tenzin Wangmo, said that the project helped her understand the importance of renewable energy. “A project of this kind teaches us ways of generating eco-friendly energy.”

The students said that the project gave them hands-on experience in designing software. They are yet to link the system with under-ground cables and install inverters.

The project will be submitted to the college for assessment on February 6, 2018.

CST also has plans to install 15kW of solar PV by March this year. With it, the college would then be generating about 50kW energy a day.

The college aims to generate at least 30 percent of its power from renewable energy.

Rajesh Rai | Phuentsholing