Even though traditional lighting may have similar or lower costing, the lithium ion based solar lighting has far more advantages in many ways. It is really no more a matter of debate and what is left to know is how much more advantageous it is than its counterpart. Let’s compare and examine the contrasts to understand the magnitude of advantages of the self- autonomous lithium ion based solar lighting solutions.
Traditional Community Lighting
The traditional grid based light is generally a 35/40 W CFL/tube light IP54 fixture which is mounted on a 4 to 6 metre pole with power consumption of up to 48W. It needs extensive underground cabling from the mains to the light pole with the inevitable grounding. The cost of this underground cabling amounts to about Rs. 8 lakhs and the cost of the pole and its fittings comes up to Rs. 3 lakhs. The luminaire comes at an average cost of about Rs 2 lakhs and lasts for about 4000 to 5000 hours which is a little over 6 months. The luminaire being replaced twice a year is also a huge cost.
Furthermore, the entire unit even after installation poses many drawbacks to the community. Power cuts render the lighting units useless and pose a security threat. To continue using the lighting solution during a grid failure or any issues as such, it would have to be connected to a generator which increases the costs significantly even if it’s temporary. It shuts off at low voltages of 150 V and endures damage at high voltages of around 300 V.
Inbuilt Lithium Ion Based Solar Lighting
One of the biggest advantages of the lithium ion based lighting is that it is self sufficient and money invested in a single unit can be considered as a one time investment with minimal maintenance in the future. The L1 and L2 community lighting solutions are the flagship products by Intelizon and they have similar luminosity to traditional lighting. Their purchase costs are Rs. 13 lakhs and Rs. 16 lakhs respectively. Their lux stands at 12 and 21 units for 6 metres. Their durability is high and have been proven to last for over 5 years with minimum issues in the unit or in terms of maintenance.
While the traditional lights may have operating/maintenance costs at Rs. 16 lakhs, the Intelizon solar lighting solutions cost merely Rs. 10 to 12 lakhs. There is a significant amount of money saved due to the battery of the luminaire deriving its power from the solar panel attached to the pole. Over the years, this cost amounts to a large sum. The solar panels are LM certified high quality units that can last for over 25 years with about 30% degradation in the first 10 to 15 years. They stay off grid and avoid massive maintenance costs too. Even on cloudy days the intelligent technology in the luminaire is able to conserve energy and sustain itself over a longer period of time until more sunlight can be available. The inbuilt sensor is also programmed to increase brightness when approached by someone. This is crucial in remote areas like villages and wildlife resorts which have huge security risks like snakes.
A Clear Winner
Without a doubt, Intelizon’s lithium ion based solar lighting solutions outperform the traditional community lighting solutions by a big margin. The Return on Investment (ROI) is immediate if you factor in cabling costs of the traditional lights. And it may go up due to the savings on grid and cable maintenance, renewable power source optimised lighting during cloudy days and high quality lighting with the lowest cost of ownership.
In short, the lithium ion based solar lighting by Intelizon is the future and it is considerably more economical to acquire than traditional community lighting with all its drawbacks.