MUMBAI: Techfest, the annual event of the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay (IIT-B) kick started on Friday. The three-day fest, in its 22nd year edition, witnessed some of the greatest innovation and adventures from the world of science and technology. In its day one, footfalls witnessed free chai, which surprised the people once they got to know how the tea was being made.
Solar urja through localisation for sustainability (SoULS), an initiative by the institute, launched ‘solar chai thela’ at the event that is being developed by a solar PV cook-stove which works on the principle of induction.
After successfully creating light-emitting diode (LED) lights, fans and other lighting devices, the team came up with an idea of solar PV cook-stove, which can be effectively used by locals for cooking purposes. “In our country, tea stalls are the most popular thing. You would see, the chai walas making chai under the sun either by using electricity or kerosene. Kerosene is most commonly used, as it is less expensive. However, by using this, it is not just harmful for the person who is making it, as he or she is continuously inhaling carbon dioxide but also is harmful to the environment,” Harshal Supal, project staff of the technical team, SoULS said.
He continued, “If the project is being accepted by agencies and used on a large scale by people/vendors, the sunrays can create abundance of solar energy. It is both energy efficient and durable.”
On day one, the chai thela managed to sell around 200 to 250 cups of tea to the visitors, for free. Though the project is being executed on a smaller scale currently, SoULS is trying to pitch the proposals to different agencies to get funded and promoted.