Progressive farmer in Gulbarga uses solar energy to operate pump-sets

A progressive farmer in Gulbarga has found a system to use renewable energy to operate irrigation pump-sets, which is expected to help end the dependence on the erratic power supply.

Dattatreya T. Kollur, who used to spend sleepless nights to get three-phase power supply to water his mango and guava orchids and sugarcane fields on his 25-acre land on the outskirts of Deval Gangapur, is now a happy man.

Mr. Kollur and his son Narendra claimed they were the first to install a solar energy plant to power irrigation pump sets.

Investment

The total investment, including for the erection of 21 flexible photovoltaic panels with a sun-tracking system that will keep them aligned towards the light, was Rs. 6 lakh. Krishi Vigyan Kendra convener Raju Teggalli commended the farmer for his achievement.

Mr. Kollur said solar energy was available from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nine hours of continuous power was more than enough to irrigate the orchids and agriculture field, he said. He did not install an inverter as he does not require any power in the night.

During cloudy days, when solar energy is not available, he uses the power supply from the Gulbarga Electricity Supply Company.

Mr. Narendra added that the solar panels came with a 25-year guarantee and required little or no maintenance, except for regular cleaning and dust removal.

Mr. Kollur purchased the barely fertile land in 1995 and transformed it into a source of income. He increased the fertility of the soil by regularly dumping the silt collected from the Bhima and using organic manure.