Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Focus more on solar energy: panel

KOCHI: The Parliamentary Committee on Energy will recommend to the Union government to increase the support for research projects like application of nanotechnology in solar cells, P.C. Chacko, MP, has said.

Mr. Chacko was speaking to presspersons along with other members of the committee after visiting the nano solar division of the Amrita Centre for Nanosciences, established at the Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences and Research Centre, Kochi, on Wednesday.

Original research carried out in the nanotechnology sector could find answer for the power shortage the country was facing. The efficiency of the photo voltaic cells currently used to tap solar energy was around 16 per cent. Nanotechnology could enhance the efficiency of the cells. The Centre was focusing on developing solar panels which could tap the energy and store them, thus reducing the cost of cells considerably, he said.

Members of the panel held discussions with the National Power Grid Corporation, National Thermal Power Corporation and officials of the thermal power station at Kayamkulam. The power generated at Kayamkulam using naphtha would cost Rs.8 a unit. The cost of power could be reduced considerably if Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) was used for power generation, he said.

The Gas Authority of India Limited (GAIL) was in the process of laying a pipeline to Kayamkulam for providing LNG from the proposed terminal in Kochi. The panel had visited Kolkata, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Chennai as part of the tour and held discussions with various agencies and officials, Mr. Chacko said.

The panel had also extended an invitation to Shantikumar Nair, Director of Amrita Centre for Nanosciences, to make a presentation on the projects before the full panel in New Delhi. Prem Nair, medical director of the institute, and Venkat Rangan, Vice-Chancellor of the Amrita Viswa Vidya Peetam, were also present.

Source: The Hindu : Kerala / Kochi News : Focus more on solar energy: panel

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