This proposal will design and build a prototype of a one hundred percent renewable energy off-grid solar microgrid. It will consist of a solar electricity generator based on photovoltaic solar panels, an electricity storage system, and a single wire with earth return electrical distribution system (SWER) with heat pumps connected into it. The purpose of the solar microgrid will be to provide electricity services, and electrical air conditioning, for a cluster of new prototype shelters, stables for livestock, and green houses to be used by indigenous Peruvians. Presently these people live in rural hamlets located in the Andes of Perú at above 15,000 feet above sea level, their dwellings are makeshift shacks made out of adobe and stone, and during two-thirds of each year the people are facing brutal low ambient temperature drops (- 40 degree F). Their shacks need to be replaced by new well-built shelters. Due to low temperature conditions many older adults and children get sick with acute bronchial infections and pneumonia and die. Thousands of their livestock also get ill and die during the freezing spells.
Connecting heat pumps to the microgrid SWER distribution system will help the people bring heat for their new shelters, their stables for livestock, and their green houses. Their housing, living, and working conditions will be improved in spite of having to experience very low ambient temperatures during two thirds of each year.
Since three decades ago the problem of indigenous Peruvians living under extremely low temperature spells in the Andes of Perú has been a major concern for the government of this country. The numbers of people affected annually by extreme low temperatures are estimated to be from 250,000 to 300,000. Presently there are no other means to provide electricity to these many people; therefore, the project will be a success because once the off-grid solar microgrid prototype is built, the Peruvian government will proceed to replicate this prototype. Additional renewable energy off-grid solar microgrids will be built in all the rural hamlets throughout the Andean Region of Perú.
The ethnicities of the Indigenous Peruvians who are affected by terrible freezing low temperatures are mainly Quechua, Aymara, Ashaninka, Mashco Piro, Awajún, Kichwa, Matsigenka, Nanti. The majority are dedicated to shepherding and self-sufficiency farming, wool weaving, handicrafts and pasturage of camelids and sheep. Family incomes are $2 to $5 US dollars per day. Having access to electricity will give this people opportunities to increase their daily income.