India - MSSRF Village

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The M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation Village Knowledge Center project was initiated as part of the Knowledge System for Sustainable Food Security Programme. A comprehensive needs analysis and potential user survey was undertaken in twenty villages surrounding the proposed hub in the Pondicherry region. The exercise was meant to assess the existing infrastructure and engage in community participation mechanisms. In-depth needs analysis is essential to determine the more appropriate size and location of the centers. These decisions, in turn, have a significant impact on the energy requirements as well as the selection of appropriate connectivity and energy solutions.

Information village shops have been established in ten villages of Pondicherry, in Southern India. They are equipped with solar-powered computers, telephone and dial-up connectivity. Each center is equipped with three computers, telephones, a printer, a wireless device and a solar panel. The solar-powered computers are updated daily with information relayed from the Internet through radio handsets and cell phones. The village computer acts as bulletin board for everyone.

There are two 10-kva system in the Foundation in Chennai. The output voltage of the system is 230V and theh maximum load is 18 amps. Each solar system supports 20 computers, 3 laser printers, 25 PL lamp of 9V and 300-V audio system.

In the hub center Villianur, there is a 1 kva solar system that supports 4 computers, 1 ink jet printer and the communication system, in addition to 1 kva solar systems in each of the five villages.

Ten villages were connected by a hybrid wired and wireless network consisting of personal computers, telephones,very high frequency (VHF) duplex radio devices, and email connectivity through dial-up telephone lines that facilitate both voice and data transfer.

Related Web-based Resources

MSSRF's web site and more information about the Information Village Research Project.

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