Home Smart 100 2010 Smart Solar Desklamp (Smart 100)

Smart Solar Desklamp (Smart 100)


The following SMART 100 profile and the information it contains is a duplication of content submitted by the applicant during the entry process. As a function of entry, applicants were required to declare that all details are factually correct, do not infringe on another’s intellectual property and are not unlawful, threatening, defamatory, invasive of privacy, obscene, or otherwise objectionable. Some profiles have been edited for reasons of space and clarity. More about the SMART 100.

This innovation initially came to life when…

The Smart Solar Desk Lamp was conceptualised in 2008 when it was apparent that there was no carbon data available from highly dispersed, tiny carbon emitters like kerosene lamps and cook stoves used by the global poor. Our Solar Desk Lamp had already gained market traction, but it was very difficult to find a method to cost-effectively measure carbon emission savings from eliminating kerosene lighting. Another Australian company, Daintree Networks, provided the basis of inspiration, at a CleanTech Conference, and the Chinese national distributors of a UK technology provided a partner for practical, low-cost development.


The purpose of this innovation is to…

Quantify with real-time data the CO2 savings from highly dispersed tiny carbon emitters, often used by the poor, like lamps and stoves, allowing the poor to sell their ability to create carbon credits and create 100% renewable villages.

It does this by…

An ultra-low power consumption microchip embedded in a 1% sample of lamps sold measures the hours that the solar lamp is on and off, which then tells us how many hours that a kerosene lamp has not been used, and therefore how much CO2 has been saved. Mesh wireless sends lamp info to a hub, then to the Internet.


This innovation improves on what came before because…

Almost all carbon monitoring of off-grid lighting, where only a few watts of electricity are available, is done by spot checks every few months, that the lamps are on. This is like an AC Nielsen guy checking what you’re watching on TV for 5 minutes. Our real-time data is far higher quality, and may allow forward contract sales of credits.

Its various benefits to the customer/end-user include…

An micro-energy entrepreneur, selling these lamps in villages, which Barefoot Power already has expertise in training, can now monetise the carbon emissions savings he is making by selling solar desk lamps. These credits could finance his microbusiness, revolutionising microfinance.


In the past, this problem was solved by…

A similar monitoring technology, but of much higher power consumption, similar to a mobile phone, where a compact fluorescent lamp on carbon credit projects would send an SMS signal to a server about its on/off performance. However, this required constant power supply — fine in on-grid relamping projects, but off-grid in villages, power is scarce, so ultra low power’s required.

Its predecessors/competitors include…

Manual spot checking of lamps in villages to see if they are “still there and working”, which gives zero information about hours of use. The University of Berkeley has invented something similar for cook stoves, but which still needs data-collecting visits.


It is made for…

Any carbon credit project trying to monitors tens of thousands or up to millions of tiny carbon emissions across a wide region or even multiple countries, but particularly for kerosene lighting by the poor. Kerosene lamps are used by 1.5 billion people worldwide, mostly in Africa, South Asia and the Pacific, but LED lighting is providing a very affordable alternative. However, so far, nobody has successfully monetised the resultant emission savings, and Barefoot Power is an established leader in off-grid lighting, so this will demonstrate additional industry leadership in a rapidly growing industry of remote micro-energy.


It is available for sale through…

Our own partnerships with importers in 30 countries worldwide, who buy our micro solar home lighting kits. No cost will be associated with the monitoring equipment, which will pay for itself in carbon certificates made within 1 year.

Our marketing strategy is to…

Move beyond our current successful laboratory trials of using ultra-low power “smart grid technology” in solar desk lamps, towards creating the first Smart Village of 20-50 Smart Solar Desk Lamps in India and Africa. This will allow carbon investors to see the first real-time data being generated, and first sales of voluntary credits. More projects will be installed, then scaled up.



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