Concurrently with the drastic drop in the price of solar panels, there has been a steep rise in customer demand for larger quantities of water from solar-driven pumps. The solar-driven SQFlex pump, which is incapable of delivering as much water as, for example, the SP pump, is therefore no longer enough. Consequently, Grundfos has sourced a Renewable Solar Inverter, which makes it possible to use solar panels as the power source and is compatible with many Grundfos products. As a result, people living in remote areas can now use the energy of the sun to drive an SP pump, capable of delivering plenty of drinking water.
- The new Renewable Solar Inverter (RSI) creates completely new business opportunities, as we can supply more pumps for much larger projects. Now we can supply a combination of SP pumps and SQFlex pumps for large-scale projects, which are becoming increasingly common around the world, says Product Manager Geraldine Lin from GPMA Submersibles.
Water for 40,000 inhabitants
The new RSI will be launched in January 2013, but prior to its release for sale, a project in Tanzania has already demonstrated that the product has great business potential. The benefitting community with 40,000 inhabitants lives in the suburbs of Moshi town, which is located at the foot of Africa's highest mountain, Mt. Kilimanjaro. Nineteen new bore holes with SQFlex pumps and SP pumps as well as the new inverter have replaced diesel-driven pumps and made the water supply both sustainable and much cheaper than before.
- The new RSI was the decisive factor that enabled us to secure the project, as there was a need for both small and large quantities of water from the different bore holes. I think our new product has a great future, as we can now quote on almost all types of projects in desert areas where there is no access to electricity, says Tanzania Country Manager Reuben Kogi.
According to Geraldine Lin, the project is a textbook example of what green products can contribute to the Grundfos product portfolio.
- We should no longer look at the sale of solar-driven pumps as something that only contributes to charity in the third world. It should also be seen as a genuine business opportunity, which we must pursue hard in the coming years, she says.