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Nanogrid TOGO

...reliable electricity transforming lives in Africa.

SOLERGIE is changing lives for the better in the West African country of Togo.

Because of their huge land area, 75% of the population of West African countries live beyond the reach of the national electricity grid and have no access to a dependable source of electricity. Solergie plans to install the infrastructure – in the form of nano grids – which provides people living in rural locations with the clean, reliable electricity they need to empower themselves. It changes everything – and has an impact which most of us can only imagine.

Home study for children, after dark. The means to charge a mobile phone – without which they are useless. And the possibilities for entrepreneurship: sewing machines; electric razors; television/cinema’s; iced-cream shops; irrigation for farming – all of which are key if rural communities are to thrive in locations where there is no grid-electricity infrastructure.

“Without Solergie, I have to work with scissors and a mechanical razor. With the energy provided by Solergie, I can use an electric shaver. I have a modern system now.”

Solegiebox nanogrid …typical System

A SolergieBox is a solar power system which can offer electricity to 8 clients, creating a very small electrical grid – or nano-grid. Each nano-grid can be expanded according to customer demand, but a typical installation for 600Wh per day consists of:

The SolergieBox XL provides 1200Wh per day and includes:

SOLERGIE have installed over 400 nano-grids throughout Togo designed to provide 230V electricity to families and micro-entrepreneurs.

The provision of irrigation pumps and refrigeration units, for example, result in better crop yield and the ability to store produce until it is needed, or can be sold – generating income for local villages.

A less obvious advantage is adult education. Communities can become better informed about national and international politics and events – much of which would not otherwise reach villagers. And a more outward looking lifestyle is stimulated by simply having Solar energy technology – made possible by Photovoltaic panels.

An example of this education-transfer comes from one entrepreneur who has set up a village-cinema using a large-screen television.The cinema entrepreneur went to University to earn a degree – but came home again when he wasn’t able to find work. The availability of reliable, silent electricity has allowed him to start a business in his own village.

Solergie is committed to providing the infrastructure and investment to make a difference to the 8.2 million people who live in Togo.

Using fewer cables than a mini-grid, the SolergieBox provides low-cost installations – a benefit which is passed on to householders. Solergie’s commercial risk is reduced because the solar system can start small and grow as client trustworthiness is established. And each household has their own energy meter so that they are billed based on their own electricity use.

These SolergieBoxes are connected to the mobile network, and send an SMS showing system status and reporting client-consumption – and also enabling remote payment.

Consumers will eventually become the owners of their own sustainable power plant, but this pay-as-you-go, consume-to-own model of tariff offered by Solergie means that the cost of ownership is spread, making it affordable for low-income families. It is exactly this kind of seed corn investment which earns the Solargie Nano-grid its place in the list of economically viable models for rural electrification.

Lighting your home by Paraffin lamp creates fumes; risks to health; contaminating spillages and unpleasant industrial smells. Lighting your home with electricity provided by a generator is noisy dirty, and expensive to run. Lighting your home with technology is exciting! It gives rural communities a hand up, helping them take their place in the 21st century.

Investment in the rural infrastructure is welcome by all. The change to clean electricity allows rural inhabitants to compete on an equal footing, and change cannot come fast enough.

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