Cellular Base Stations Powered by the Sun

It seems that the mobile industry is another technology field where solar power soon can play an important role in reducing costs and ensuring a reliable power supply.

In a new study ABI Research analysts predict that the future mobile phone base stations will be sun powered. They say that over 335,000 base stations worldwide will be using solar power by the end of 2013, with around 40,000 of those being completely autonomous and off-grid. The research firm explained that improvements in photovoltaic cells have meant that solar energy is now a viable option for supplying power to charging stations.

“The market for autonomous solar powered cell sites looks set to grow from extremely modest levels today to over 40,000 renewable energy sites by the end of 2013. A further 295,000 base stations are expected to supplement on-grid power usage with solar,” said Stuart Carlaw, vice-president of ABI Research.

Still, the majority of these cellular base stations will use diesel or mains electricity to supplement their solar panels, especially in areas where population density and less solar energy require it.

Probably the developing countries will be the biggest winners as remote communities will receive phone coverage and Internet connections for the first time. According to some UN figures half of the world is still not able to make a phone call.

Other alternatives to normal electricity for base stations being considered are wind power, fuel cells and even compressed air.

Source: Market Watch

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