Alex Chong, Technical Sales Consultant at Energy Matters’ sister company Apollo Energy, recently again travelled to Papua New Guinea to assist with the installation of another small power system in a remote, disadvantaged community.
In Australia, we’re used to multi-kilowatt systems being standard; but in Papua New Guinea, the systems are often measured in watts – in part due to the remoteness of the locations where they are installed.
But even a tiny solar power system can make a massive positive change in lives; providing light and the ability to maintain communications – it can quite literally save lives.
With 4 Daqo solar panels provided by Energy Matters in tow and other necessary equipment, Alex set off to install a 12V off-grid system to power up 10 x 5W LED lights plus mobile and laptop chargers for a new health clinic in remote Chimbu Province.
To reach the location involved a flight from Port Moresby to Mt Hagan, followed by 5 hours travel via 4WD.
While a beautiful part of the world, it’s not one where you want to get sick due to its isolation and very limited health services. The new health clinic has just 1 doctor and two nurses for a community of 8000. An outbreak of measles earlier this year in the district took the lives of 3 children.
The organizer of this project was HOPE Worldwide Australia; a non-government organisation committed to bringing hope and changing the lives of those in need.
This isn’t the first time Alex has travelled to Papua New Guinea to assist with a solar project. In 2013, he helped with the installation of small solar panel systems on the rooftops of another rural clinic in the Chimbu province and 9 Mile Urban Clinic in Port Moresby. That trip had some interesting encounters, including a brush with bandits. It seems being a solar installer in Papua New Guinea is not for the faint-hearted.