Article compiled by: Astha Chaubey, PGDM 2016, MRC member

Photo courtesy: Nachiket Devasthaley, PGDM 2016, MRC member

Kirloskar Institute of Advanced Management Studies (KIAMS) recently held a seminar “Helios” as a part of its Annual Management Inter Collegiate event- Operacy. It has turned into a marquee event over the years where students not only get a taste of the real world corporate challenges but an opportunity to interact with industry experts as well. The theme for Operacy ‘14 was “Unleashing Apollo” and it focused on the potential of solar energy and its effective implementation in rural economy.

In keeping with the theme, Helios, the day-long seminar brought together speakers from the industry and NGOs who talked about the latest developments in solar energy and its management. It was a hugely anticipated event because challenges involved in solar energy and myths about it were some of the topics that were to be discussed on the day. Things began on a bright note with the traditional lighting of the lamp as Prof Bidyanand Jha introduced the event in his welcome address to a packed gathering.

Oct15Dr. Gundu Sabde, Founder & Chairman, Reylon Solar Pvt Ltd, Mr.H.M Kulkarni, General Manager, Renewable Energy Offgrid, Maharashtra Energy Development Agency, Dr. Dipali Mandhwe, Solar renewable energy consultant and Mr. Ayan Bandopadhay, Director Bluegrass Home Products LLP were the keynote speakers for the seminar. With their years of combined experience in the field, they ensured that the participants had plenty to take home from the event.

Dr. Sabde set the ball rolling as he talked about challenges we face as far as solar energy management is concerned. Giving the example of Germany, which is lapping up solar energy in a big way, he said, “India’s energy needs surpassed 3000 million while the amount of energy the world requires is 20,000 gig watt. Only 0.2 % of Energy is met with solar. The problem over the next eight years will be space rather than cost of setup.” That’s how he highlighted the importance of PV system with grid connection.

Oct15aMr. Kulkarni offered much needed practical understanding of the subject as he focused on the projects implemented by the Maharashtra Energy Development Agency (M.E.D.A). He elaborated on the objectives of the program that include promotion of Solar Photovoltaic (SPV) Systems and improvement of quality of life in rural areas through use of environment-friendly solar lighting systems, amongst others. He then detailed the benefits of SPV systems by saying, “It operates on the freely available solar energy, there’s no fear of power cuts, it is trouble free, pollution free, easy to operate with negligible costs involved.”

Oct 15bDr. Mandhwe was the next one to take to stage and she explained the nuances of solar energy. It was an interesting perspective for the participants to look at as she spoke about the process of harnessing energy, photovoltaic (PV), types of solar cells and the components required to make the solar cells. Her presentation titled “Exposure to solar technologies” set up the event nicely for Mr. Bandyopadhya to then come in and deliver his talk on the “Art of Startup”.

The exciting element of his talk was the fact that it included 10 pointers budding entrepreneurs should take into consideration while launching a startup. Mr. Bandopadhyay listed them to the participants while he urged them to, “Make meaning, make a mantra, get going, define a business model, set milestones and achievements. Find your niche, hire infected people, lower barriers to adoption, and don’t let pressure grind you down,” was his parting shot.

As the seminar drew to a close, Prof Anita Kshetri proposed the vote of thanks and mementos were distributed. An exhibition of Solastica products from Kirloskar Integrated Technologies Limited that was held at the venue also hit the spot with the participants who were going back home richer in experience and understanding of the true significance of solar energy for our times.

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