Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sun power street lights put to test

Sun power street lights put to test

Sun power street lights put to test

F

IRST Prime Minister Prince Norodom Ranariddh has initiated a revolutionary

scheme which might result in solar-powered street lighting installed throughout

Cambodia.

The lighting system is currently on trial outside the Council

of Ministers after being installed by Ponleujit, a subsidiary of the Daewoo

Centre which sells cars and electronics. Daewoo general manager Ng Ching Poo

explained that his boss David Tan had been asked by the Prince to investigate

solar lighting.

"Our first priority is to help the Prince realize his

dreams," said Ng Ching Poo. "One of the means of helping people [in Cambodia] is

giving them light and the Prince wanted something that could be installed

quickly." Eleven street lights have been erected outside the Council of

Ministers in the trial.

Ponleujit have decided to test panels made by the

American company Solarex which are manufactured under license in Australia.

The lights were installed a month ago at a cost of $1,350 and will be

evaluated after another one or two months. Each unit is completely independent

and works by absorbing sunlight into a panel which charges up a battery. The

battery has a timer and the lights come on automatically after dark for a set

period.

Ng Ching Poo hopes to eventually manufacture the units locally

which will greatly reduce costs and provide jobs. Employment opportunities will

also come from installing, maintaining and monitoring the lights.

In the

long-term, households and businesses will be targeted for solar powered internal

lighting but for now Ponleujit are concentrating on street lighting only. Ng

Ching Poo believes solar panels will help the country prosper as lighting will

provide increased security and will also be a boost for tourism.

He

believes solar lighting will help Cambodia prosper along with the country's

long-term investors.

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