Yingli Europe and SolarAid launch solar lights in Africa

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The SM100. Source: SolarAid

The European subsidiary of leading module manufacturer Yingli Green has partnered with climate change charity SolarAid to launch an affordable solar-powered light for distribution in rural Africa.

The light, known as the SM100, was designed and developed by Yingli Europe for SolarAid who had designs to provide a solar light for use in Africa to make electricity more accessible to those without use of the grid and eradicate the harmful kerosene lamp.

The affordable and durable SM100 retails at US$5 in Africa and provides more than five hours of constant light. Its versatile rectangular shape means it can be used as a traditional desk light, hung on a wall or as a head torch for hands-free use.

“The SM100 will provide safe light to millions more families who live currently on less than US$1.25 per day. Not only will the lamp save lives but also support children's' education at home in the dark evenings and saving families money by avoiding the purchase of air polluting kerosene,” said Darren Thompson, managing director of Yingli Europe in a statement. “We are pleased to provide SolarAid with a durable high quality solar light at the lowest price point possible that will help to transform the quality of life for millions of people that live without electricity. At Yingli we stand behind our mission – Affordable Green Energy for All.”

“When I first started at SolarAid 10 years ago the lights we sold in Africa were US$25 each. Over the last 10 years prices have come down and now SolarAid is proud to be launching what we believe is the world's most affordable solar light on the market,” also commented Nick Sireau, CEO of SolarAid. “Working with our social enterprise, SunnyMoney, in Africa we will be selling the SM100 to people in rural communities for just US$5 each. We sincerely hope this step change in pricing will help us to eradicate the kerosene lamp for good.”

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