In the very first year of its inception GE3 went to Bangalore to attend the national level conference on Bio-gasifiers.

Introduction about the trip and various entities involved

GASE or the Group for Alternative Sources of Energy(the name on inception) has been created very recently by the UG students of IIT Kanpur with a broad vision to participate in the field of alternative energy and make meaningful contribution to the same. After continuous meetings and brainstorming sessions eventually the group decided to start from the rural energy sector and thus began to study about the biomass and solar energy sector. GASE decided to embark on these two lines as biomass and solar energy are clearly two of the most abundant sources of energy in the rural sector.
So the search for a knowledge source began. GASE then spotted The Anchor Team Training Program which was organized by TERI (The Energy and Resources Institute) in Bangalore from 21st to 25th July in association with Mahatma Gandhi Institute for Rural Energy Development (MGIRED) and Swiss Agency for Development and Co-operation (SDC). The program contents almost matched our expectations and thus without hesitation five of the GASE members Sumit Sarkar(EE), Anand Vardhan Mishra(ME), Shambhu Kumar(ME), Mukul Atri(AE) and Aayush Goenka (M.Sc. Chm) got ready for the trip. (However Mukul could not attend the training due to personal reasons)

It was decided that these members attend the training and upon their return tell every one else in the group about it and what they learned there.

It was a very good experience for us and in the following pages an in depth analysis of the trip is given

Backgrounds

TERI

TERI is a multi dimensional institute. It is an international organization with global presence. Its chairman is Mr. R.K. Pachauri who needs no introduction. TERI has also granted IIT Kanpur Environmental Sciences building the status of green building.

CoSMiLE

It is joint venture between SDC and TERI which reads as Competence Network for Small and Micro Enterprises. It has been started to disseminate various technologies to small enterprises to improve them and make them competitive.

More information is available on –

www.teri.org

www.cosmile.org

http://www.sdc.admin.ch/

Objectives

The objectives of the trip were decided to be as follows

  1. Gaining knowledge about modern biomass technologies.
  2. Making contacts for future reference.(Networking)
  3. Getting new ideas and finding new ways to proceed in this field.
  4. Learning how to conduct a survey and how to make a project report.
  5. To find ground realities in this field and gaining hands on experience.

The Trainees

The trainees constituted of mainly four groups

1. Government officials(mostly project engineers),
2. NGOs,
3. Small scale entrepreneurs
4. Students (only GASE members).

Most trainees were there to know about modern technologies (in case of NGOs and government officials) so that they might promote them in their own areas. Small scale entrepreneurs wished to start commercial production of the gasifiers and/or were willing to step in this area considering future business prospects.

Day-wise analysis

Day1: 21 July, 2008

Registration was followed by inaugural session.
Presentation was given regarding CoSMiLE, MGIRED and purpose of ATTP.
Presentation was given by Prof. P G Tewari (BVBCET)on energy basics and biomass basics.
Presentation was given by Dr N K S Rajan(IISc Bangalore) on biomass atlas and scope for biomass as energy source.
Presentation was given by Dr Sanjay Mande on basics of biomass gasification.

Day2: 22 July, 2008

Presentation was given by Dr Sanjay Mande on “Gasifier Case Studies”.
Presentation was given by Prof. P G Tewari on “Measurement and performance of biomass energy”.

  1. Measurement-practical session was held. Participants were divided into four groups and they found out efficiency of various appliances.

Presentation was given by Mr. P Raman on use of gasifiers in Khoya making industries in Rajasthan.

  • Presentation was given by Ms. Sudha P on scope of CDM in promotion of biomass technologies.
  • Day3: 23rd July, 2008

    This day was attributed to various field-visits done by the participants (divided in 4 groups).
    >All the participants visited following sites:

    (I)Adamya Chetna mid-day meal unit.

    (II)Silk Dying Unit

    This was followed by individual group visits as follows:

    Group 1 visited Veterinary college hostel.

    Group 2 visited Omkar dying unit.

    Group 3 visited Gandharva Bakery.

    Group 4 visited MGIRED canteen.

    All these sites were situated at different locations in Bangalore.

    >The main objective of these visits was to examine the current fuel-consumption and cost scenario and compare this with the same in the case of biomass gasifier at these sites. At the same time, we also had to compare other factors like working conditions, portability etc. between the current source of energy and the biomass gasifier.

    Each group was to deliver a presentation with a Detailed Project Report about their visit giving complete analysis and recommending if possible the use of gasifiers in their units.

    Day4: 24th July,2008

    1. An interactive presentation was given by Mr P Raman on “Biomass fuel characterization”.
    2. Mr. N Ravi Kumar and Mr Sameer Kanabargi shared their experiences in biomass business (as manufacturers and service providers) with us.
    3. Mr Basavaraju delivered a talk on biofuels.
    4. Expeller unit and biomass gasifier at MGIRED were demonstrated.
    5. This was followed by a written test.
    6. Photo session was also organized.

    Day5: 25th July,2008

    1. Ms C K Jalajakshi gave a presentation on climatic change.
    2. Each group presented their DPR.
    3. Prizes and certificates were distributed and the program was
    concluded.

    Theoretical Aspects

    We were exposed to many things which are listed below.

    1. Biomass gasification in detail.
    2. Biomass Atlas of India.
    3. Elementary details about CDM and carbon trading.
    4. Calculating efficiencies of simple energy systems.
    5. Financial aspects of biomass centered projects.
    6. Related social issues.
    7. Problems associated with alternative technologies.
    8. Energy audit and presentation of a Detailed Project Report.
    9. Climate change.

    Networking

    One of the objectives of this trip was to make contacts and meet people that remain screened from us in the institute. On this account the trip can be accounted as successful as we made a few contacts with people related to this field of knowledge.

    Contact List

    1. Mr. Mayank Patel, small scale entrepreneur, 94253 32584
    2. Dr. P.G. Tewari, Professor Energy Systems BVBCET, Hubli.
    3. Mr. Vipin Gupta , Air Energy Solutions 9868874105
    4. Ms. CK Jalajakshi- Associate Fellow Rural & Renewable Energy(TERI)
    5. Mr. Y Nagaraju – Field Coordinator Rural and Reneable Energy
    6. Mr. Karansingh Dabi – MP Nature Friend Kisan Enterprises, related with NGOs.
    7. Mr. P Raman – Fellow, biomass energy technology applications, (TERI)
    8. Mr. Kadar Basha – Greens ,NGO 9985222762
    9. Mr. L.V.K. Prasad – Distt. Head, Sarvodaya Integrated Rural Development Society (NGO) 9901745671
    10. Mr. Ali – Govt. official, Project engineer
    11. Mr. A. Dattatri- Project Engg.(IREP), 94483-30756,93420-10494.
    12. Mr. Shivanand Nashi, COO Unisun Technologies Bangalore.
    13. Mohit Mundra – Alumni IIT Kanpur, Aurora Integrated Systems Bangalore.
    14. Experiences

      A question might be raised that could the knowledge that GASE members accumulated by making this trip be gained within the campus. The members who made the trip feel that the theoretical knowledge about the biomass gasifiers and the other things that were discussed might have been available here within the campus but the interaction with people involved with implementing alternative energy technologies at ground zero was a certain impossibility.

      One of the trainees who is employed by a solar energy firm in Delhi commented that the problem with this sector is that the people keep on experimenting but forget implementing. This was an eye-opener for us as it brought in front of us the actual scenario of which we are unaware of most of the times.

      We were also exposed to the reality that on the field the person who implements the technologies does not know how to read or write in most cases which puts more limitations on the complication and implementation of the technologies.

      There again is the question that what we can do as students who do not have sound theoretical knowledge of this field when there are already many experienced people working in this field ? We feel that creating energy solutions is feasible for a dedicated student and that knowledge comes with theory as well with experience on the field. Just as labs are much different from the theory, field is much different from the labs.

      Future implications of this trip might turn out to bright as many of the trainees (veterans in this field) seemed willing to share their knowledge and problems with us for mutual co-operation and it seems that we can get some on field projects from them and get a head start in the energy sector.

      Future directions

      Many ideas poured in during the trip relating to how we should proceed further. Some of our initial ideas were deleted and some were re-emphasized. Our current ideas are-

      1. Getting problem statements from the NGOs and solve real life problems gaining field experience in the process,
      2. Creating a feasible biomass energy solution for IIT Kanpur campus by using the huge amount of biomass produced here per day.
      3. Getting ideas and inputs from the alumni, faculty and PG students.
      4. Getting endorsements from the NGOs, academicians, alumni and interested corporate firms.
      5. Taking part in competitions related to energy.
      6. Creating a solid business plan on how we can make any village energetically self dependent.
      7. Attending future talks and seminars which are organized from time to time in and outside the campus to be updated on latest technology and encouraging others to spread awareness and enhancing UG research in this area.
      8. Learning about existing technologies and making them more efficient.