Isolated locations with no mains electricity supply either have to make do without electricity, or generate their own. For our new veterinary clinic, Southern Thailand Elephant Foundation Thailand have opted for a renewable electricity generation system using solar power to generate the energy needed.
Of course an off-grid system is not the same as being on the mains, but it ensures economy of use, is far cheaper than getting a mains connection, and is much more ecosensitive, as well as being cheaper and quieter than using a petrol or diesel generator. For us, in the peace and quiet of the jungle where we are building a rest home and hospital for elephants it was a no-brainer.
Thanks to the generosity of a very special and generous benefactor, who shares our desire to use renewable energy, we have been able to plan for our needs now as the office and laboratory for the new veterinary clinic are being built. The roof will accommodate the solar panels needed to generate electricity and provide clean energy for lighting, air-conditioning and for the the pump to draw water from the bore hole to the storage tank at the rear of the clinic.
The Phuket-based specialist firm MonoSun Technology has been advising Project Manager, Jake Thaotad, and an appropriate system has now been agreed. The layout, arc of the sun, and compass position of the building where the panels will be fixed are all key elements. We also have to remember that in the rainy season less sun gets through to generate electricity so there needs to be plenty of battery storage and the ability to add more panels or batteries later.
The MonoSun representatives were very interested in our program and took aerial photos of the site, as reported in an earlier blog.
We are convinced this is the right way forward and plan to build renewable energy sources into our plans for other buildings on the site.