News 2010

Engineering internship and volunteering opportunities at Sunlabob

In 2011, Sunlabob will be offering more internship and volunteering opportunities to qualified/aspiring electrical engineers. We accept applicants from all over the world, and offer a unique opportunity to all who would like to learn more about the renewable energy field.

For more information, please read the placement opportunity.

Sunlabob teams up with GTZ to provide energy efficiency training

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Sunlabob has teamed up with German development agency, GTZ, to provide energy efficiency training to teachers and undergraduates from the Faculty of Engineering, National University of Laos for a period of one year commencing Aug 1, 2011.

This initiative is based on the Lao-German programme on human resource development for the market economy, and the focus of the project is on labour market oriented integrated vocational education. The objective of the project is to enable public and private organizations to jointly improve the administrative, institutional and human conditions for a market economy, as well as to improve the performance of integrated vocational training system to support economic and social development.

Read more: Sunlabob teams up with GTZ to provide energy efficiency training

Solar project improves quality of life for 75 Lao families

In Sep 2010, a German-Lao collaboration improved the lives of 75 Lao families by replacing their kerosene lamps with solar lanterns. Unlike the kerosene lamps, the solar lanterns are a safe and convenient light source that do not emit harmful fumes and cause CO2 pollution. With the lanterns, children can now read at night, women can weave or perform manual work longer, and men can go out at dusk to hunt. This results in more income generation activities for the families, and an improved quality of life.

To view article (in German), please click on this link.
For another article on this project, please view this Sunlabob article.

Sunlabob begins construction of sanitation plant at Northern Agriculture and Forestry College

On Dec 7, 2010, Sunlabob, in cooperation with the Lao Institute for Renewable Energy (LIRE) and Swiss NGO Helvetas, began construction of a sanitation plant, the Decentralised Wastewater Treatment Systems (DEWATS), at the Northern Agriculture and Forestry College in Luang Prabang, Northern Laos. Funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, the installation came about after several feasibility studies conducted on site, as well as discussions with school officials. Throughout the year, Sunlabob and LIRE consultants visited the site several times to determine the most suitable location to install the plant.

In Laos, only 52% of the national population and about 18% of schools have access to wastewater treatment systems. Systems to treat wastewater are only available in some areas of the capital town while in rural areas, 80% of the people are not connected to any form of sanitation.

Read more: Sunlabob begins construction of sanitation plant at Northern Agriculture and Forestry College

Sunlabob at the Cleantech Open competition in San Jose, California

On Nov 17, 2010, Simon Henschel, Managing Director of Sunlabob International Pte Ltd, represented Sunlabob at the Cleantech Open Global Ideas Competition in San Jose, California. In front of a crowd of 2,500 investors, entrepreneurs, sponsoring companies, corporations, members of academia, Simon presented a 5-min video on Sunlabob’s Solar Powered Water Purification System.

The competition included entries from the winners of national Cleantech Open Competitions in 20 countries. Though we did not win, Sunlabob received plenty of attention from Silicon Valley investors interested in collaborating with other finalists from regional Cleantech Open networks in USA and around the world.

Read more: Sunlabob at the Cleantech Open competition in San Jose, California

Check out our latest Solar Lantern video!

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This video features the Solar Lantern Rental System (SLRS), and the impact it has in Laos, Uganda and Afghanistan.
Since its implementation in Laos in 2007, the Solar Lantern Rental System has received numerous international awards and worldwide recognition for its innovative operation model.

Watch the video

MMG and Sunlabob to provide clean water solutions to Lao Villages

On Nov 17, 2010, Sunlabob Renewable Energy Ltd signed an agreement with MMG Sepon, marking the establishment of the MMG Sepon Water Project. Over 1 year, Sunlabob will provide clean water solutions and community development to villages in Savannakhet Province, Laos that form the community around the Sepon Mine.

MMG Sepon undertook detailed research of community development needs through a Participatory Planning Project in 2010 that built on results of regular household survey work. The community and the research identified better water quality and sanitation as a priority need within the villages. MMG identified 8 sites, comprising of 11 villages, in Savannakhet Province that required community development support. In general the water resources for these villages are poor; suffering from scarcities and/or quality concerns in the dry season, silting in the wet season and/or being located too far away from the villagers to be collected by hand.

For more information, please read the attached press release.

Sunlabob beats competition to win Cleantech Open Singapore Title

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On Oct 15, 2010, Simon Henschel, Managing Director of Sunlabob International Pte Ltd., competed at the Cleantech Open National Competition held at the Asian Youth Energy Summit 2010 in Singapore. His presentation on Sunlabob’s Solar Water Purification System and its operational and financial model impressed the panel of judges and beat out the competition. In line with the competition’s focus, Simon spoke about how innovative operational models are important, on top of clean technology to transform the livelihoods of rural communities.
The Cleantech Open Global Ideas competition is the world's largest business competition devoted to finding, funding, and fostering successful cleantech businesses. To qualify, participants first have to win their respective national competition.

Read more: Sunlabob beats competition to win Cleantech Open Singapore Title

First grid connected solar system in Lao PDR under operation

On Oct 6, 2010, the German Embassy of Laos inaugurated a solar system, comprising of Photovoltaic and Solar Thermal Panels, at the German Embassy in Vientiane. For this ceremonious occasion, the German Embassy played host to government officials, along with dignitaries and representatives of various international organisations.

The solar system was designed and installed by Sunlabob in co-operation with German manufacturer Centrosolar AG and Deutsche Energie Agentur - GmbH (dena) - The German energy agency. With the installation of the system, the embassy will be able to significantly reduce its power consumption without affecting reliability. Potentially, all the measurements can account for savings of up to 40% on electricity. This project and other energy efficiency measures place the embassy as a leader in energy conservation.

Read more: First grid connected solar system in Lao PDR under operation

German-Lao collaboration brings light to remote Lao village

In Sept 2010, Sunlabob installed a solar lantern charging station with 45 solar lanterns in a remote village in Xieng Khuong province, bringing electricity and light to 265 villagers. The project is the result of a collaboration between key partners the Lao Institute of Renewable Energy (LIRE), Solaventus Foundation, a thrust that supports renewable energy and drinking water projects in developing countries and emerging markets, and LIRE’s implementation partner, Sunlabob. Through the Solaventus Foundation, German solar company KaiserSolar and German CSR consulting firm eco:factum funded the installation of the solar systems in the village.

Read more: German-Lao collaboration brings light to remote Lao village

PhD candidate conducts research on SLRS pilot program in Uganda

Thomas Carton, a doctoral candidate in International Health and Development at Tulane University, has proposed a research design to measure the economic, health, and social impact of Sunlabob’s solar lantern rental model (SLRS), using a pilot program in Uganda as the study site.  The goal of the research is to evaluate the venture by testing claims pertaining to the use and impact of solar lanterns.

There are three study objectives for the research. The first objective is to investigate the drivers and barriers of solar lantern adoption, the second is to investigate a possible association between solar lantern use and reductions in indoor air pollution; and the third is to investigate a potential association between solar lantern use and reading and study time for school-going children and productive work for adults. The full research prospectus is available and can be obtained through direct communication with the researcher (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ).

Read more: PhD candidate conducts research on SLRS pilot program in Uganda

Sunlabob recognized as leading social innovator in Asia

Sunlabob Director Andy Schroeter was one of three Social Entrepreneurs recognized as leading social innovators in Asia during the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting of the New Champions 2010, held in Tianjin, People’s Republic of China, on 13-15 September.

The World Economic Forum is an independent international organization committed to improving the state of the world by engaging leaders in partnerships to shape global, regional and industry agendas. This year’s forum featured a group of 30 Social Entrepreneurs from around the world taking part in the meeting, providing an on-the-ground perspective to sustainability and social innovation

Read more: Sunlabob recognized as leading social innovator in Asia

Sunlabob installs SLRS in remote and mountainous Phakeo Village

On 15-18 August 2010, Sunlabob installed a solar charging station, and conducted Solar Lantern Rental System (SLRS) training sessions for Village Technicians in Phakeo village, Xiengkhouang province.

Financed by Swiss NGO Helvetas, the SLRS, comprising of solar lanterns and a charging station, was implemented so as to bring about safe and affordable lighting and electricity to XiengKhouang province, one of the poorest and least developed provinces in Laos.

The SLRS is a complete service package that combines established solar lantern technology with a sustainable operational model and continued monitoring and evaluation. A central charging station powered by a solar photovoltaic array can charge up to eight solar lanterns simultaneously, and is operated by a village entrepreneur/village technician, who is responsible for issuing fully-charged lanterns to customers, collecting rental fees, and maintaining the system.

Read more: Sunlabob installs SLRS in remote and mountainous Phakeo Village

Opening ceremony of Nam Ka hydropower station featured on Lao national television

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The inauguration of Nam Ka’s hydropower station, the first Lao renewable energy rural electrification project to be connected to the national grid, marked a significant step for rural development in Laos.

Reporters from news agencies across the country, including Television Nationale Lao, were there to gain first hand insight on the groundbreaking development.

Please click here to view Television Nationale Lao’s news report (in Lao).

Inauguration of Lao’s first rural electrification project connected to the national grid

On August 9, 2010, Sunlabob and its Swiss partner ENTEC AG, in association with Swiss NGO Helvetas, the Xiengkhoang department of Energy and Mines, and Electricité du Laos (EdL) inaugurated the first Lao renewable energy rural electrification project to be connected to the national grid. The event, which was held at the project site in Nam Ka, paid host to the Governor of Xiengkhoang, the project coordinator of the European Union in Laos, the German Ambassador of Laos, and the director of Sunlabob, along with dignitaries and representatives of EDL, Helvetas, and members of the local communities.

Read more: Inauguration of Lao’s first rural electrification project connected to the national grid

Sunlabob enjoys 10th annual company vacation in Vietnam

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Sunlabob employees were once again rewarded for their hard work and treated to a 4-day trip to the beachside town of Cua Tùng, Vietnam. Staff morale was high as team spirit was fostered through full-filled team-building games and activities. The annual company trip has become a huge part of Sunlabob’s corporate identity as local and international staff come together to enjoy time off work and get to know one another better. The management at Sunlabob understands that such incentives are important for the growth of the organisation as it keeps employees motivated and enthusiastic about every phase of their job.

The Sunlabob team looks forward to many more successful renewable energy projects for the years ahead.

Sunlabob’s SLRS featured at UN ESCAP’s 66th Commission Session

Sunlabob is proud to have been featured at the United Nation’s Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific’s (ESCAP) 66th Commission Session, held in Incheon, Republic of Korea from 13 to 19 May 2010.The Commission Session’s exhibition, themed ‘Financing an Inclusive and Green Future’, featured sustainable environmentally-friendly projects from Asia and the Pacific, and Sunlabob’s Solar Lantern Rental System (SLRS) was one of them.

Forty eight Member states and Associate member states attended the sessions with high level representation. Over 300 delegates participated in the deliberations, and government leaders came together to agree on joint economic and financial policies to transform Asia’s sharp rebound from the global economic crisis into a permanent repositioning of the region in the global economy.

The Commission Session was a success and Sunlabob looks forward to having its projects being selected for many more events and activities to come.

Vacancy Announcement

Sunlabob is seeking a qualified individual to fill the position of Electric Engineer.

For full job description, please click here.

New batch of Sunlabob lanterns arrives in Uganda, Africa

On July 14, 2010, Sunlabob dispatched a new batch of solar lanterns to two villages in Uganda, Saazi and Bussi.

Sunlabob’s franchisee, TSSD, is currently in the process of handing out the lamps to another 20 villages.

In 2008, Sunlabob launched a south-south business initiative with Ugandan company TSSD. Now solar powered charging stations are operating in a number of remote Ugandan villages. The franchise came about thanks to a prize won at the World Bank Group's Lighting Africa Development Marketplace in 2008.

To watch a video of Sunlabob’s venture into Africa, please click here.

Sunlabob-Khiri partnership brings light to remote villages in Laos

Sunlabob has collaborated with Khiri Reach, a not-for-profit division of the Khiri Travel Group that supports sustainable non-profit projects in Asia, to bring solar systems to remote villages in Laos. The "Lights to the Community" project aims to install solar powered lights in Laos' remote villages that are off the national grid and do not have access to electricity.

The Khiri-Sunlabob partnership is rather unique. Khiri collects donations from their customers (tourists in the region) and use the donations for sustainable projects in the region. Sunlabob then supplies its technical know-how and builds solar systems on behalf of Khiri, before transferring ownership of the systems to the villages. Maintenance costs are collected as donations from Khiri’s clients through the same system.

Many benefits arise from lighting up villages. Villages need light at communal places such as water wells, medical health centres (which need refrigerators to store medicine) and community houses. These places are used by most people of the village at regular intervals.

In June 2010, Khiri Reach proceeded with the project and Sunlabob installed a solar lighting system in Ban Nakoun village, Borikhamxay Province. The solar system will benefit 95 families in the village, where it will be used for activities such as farming and weaving.

For more information about the “Lights to the Community” project, please check out the Khiri Reach website.

Sunlabob director featured in ‘Business & Community Brief’ newsletter

Business & Community Brief, the first informative newsletter on NGO/private sectors relationships, recently interviewed Sunlabob director Andy Schroeter on his innovative sustainable business solutions.

The interview can be found here. Please note that article is in French.

Sunlabob conducts maintenance checks on solar street lights at Lao Tobacco Limited

On July 1, Sunlabob conducted maintenance checks on independent solar street lights at Lao Tobacco Limited.

The solar street lights were installed in the company’s factory compound in 2006 and are used to provide light for workers during the night.

During the maintenance checks, Sunlabob engineers used state-of-the-art equipment to conduct in-depth electrical testing on the solar lights and batteries, and replaced the parts that had worn out due to age.

Independent solar street lights are fast gaining popularity because they offer exceptional lighting whilst, at the same time, produce considerable economic and environmental savings. The whole system is powered by a Solar Photovoltaic Panel and is completely independent from utility power.

The installation of solar street lights at Lao Tobacco certainly marked the first step in paving the way for access to low energy consumption lights for streets/roads in Laos.

For more information on Sunlabob’s solar street lights, please visit our High power LED street light section.

New E-Cycles at Sunlabob

A brand new range of E-Cycles is now available at Sunlabob.

The new line-up includes two-wheelers of all shapes and sizes, including a pair of children’s bikes. For adults, Sunlabob offers a range of styles, including the usual choices of mountain bikes and utility bikes.

Sunlabob’s E-Cycles are ideal for commuting, or simply for a leisurely ride with a thought for the environment. They also offer a silent and smooth transportation solution, and are inexpensive to operate and refuel.

Read more: New E-Cycles at Sunlabob

Sunlabob goes to Myanmar

On June 17-18, a representative from Sunlabob attended the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Business Forum in Yangon, Myanmar.

The forum, which was the 2nd one held in the country, promoted awareness about renewable energy and energy efficiency in Myanmar. The objective of the conference was to form focal points for renewable energy, facilitate dialogue on the challenges and opportunities in private sector renewable energy businesses, and explore opportunities to collaborate with international corporations for new technological development.

Read more: Sunlabob goes to Myanmar

Sunlabob completes energy efficiency baseline study on Phu Bia mining

In June 2010, Sunlabob completed an energy efficiency baseline study for the process facilities on Phu Bia Mining Limited’s Phu Kham copper gold mine.

Based on the plant's energy consumption data collected over a 6 month observation period from 1 October 2009 to 31 March 2010, the aim of the study was to present a baseline analysis of the plant's average electricity consumption, as a first step to become more energy efficient in the future. The study also suggested a number of tailored energy conservation measures to increase the energy efficiency of the existing electrical power system.

Furthermore, Phu Bia Mining Limited has also requested Sunlabob to conduct a more in depth energy audit of its camp site and office buildings in August 2010.

Collaboration with Indian and Tanzanian partners for Fredskorpset exchange programme

On May 28, Sunlabob entered into a promising partnership with Auroville Energy Products¹ (AEP) of India and C.B Energy Co. Ltd² of Tanzania. The partnership, which is based on a one year reciprocal exchange of young participants in the framework of the South-South programme initiated by Norwegian government agency, Fredskorpset (FK), was finalised following a successful meeting at the Sunlabob headquarters in Vientiane from May 24 to 28.

Through the South-South programme, FK links countries and partners in the South that appear on the current DAC list of developing countries to mutually benefit from a 1-year exchange of young professionals. The partners in the network elect between them a primary partner in the south, that acts on behalf of the network and carries its duties and responsibilities vis-à-vis Fredskorpset. The exchange enables people with similar professional backgrounds or interests to learn from one another and contribute to competency building and raising awareness.

Read more: Collaboration with Indian and Tanzanian partners for Fredskorpset exchange programme

Sunlabob donates 10 Solar Home Systems to victims of Cyclone Ketsana

On June 2, 2010, Sunlabob donated 10 Solar Home Systems to the Lao Red Cross in Vientiane to aid victims of Cyclone Ketsana. This was in support of a fund raising activity co-organised by the French Chamber of Commerce in Laos (CCIFL) and the Lao Red Cross.

Cyclone Ketsana claimed at least 24 lives in Laos after wreaking havoc in the Philippines and Vietnam in September last year. The natural catastrophe left much of southern Laos under water and caused extensive damage to roads, irrigation networks, schools, hospitals and government offices.

Sunlabob hopes that the Solar Home Systems would help improve the lives of villagers affected by the aftermath of the Cyclone.

Sunlabob teams up with CSR consulting firm eco:factum

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In May 2010, Sunlabob entered into an exclusive partnership with eco:factum, a consulting firm advising companies in the renewable energy environment seeking for appropriate projects to fulfill their corporate responsibility commitment.

An effective commitment requires not always a lot of money, but it requires know-how, labor resources, time, suitable projects and the right partners. Therefore eco:factum and its network partners provide a wide range of services to its clients e.g. CSR-consulting, project-management, marketing and communication.

To put eco:factum´s clients corporate responsibility commitment into action the collaboration will focus on introducing Sunlabob's renewable energy solutions into poverty stricken remote areas in Laos. Both companies will leverage on each other's experience in CSR activities, and formulate socially responsible strategies that would benefit the poorest of the poor in Laos.

Read more: Sunlabob teams up with CSR consulting firm eco:factum

Sunlabob conducts hygiene training at Xieng Khouang province

In May 2010, Sunlabob, in cooperation with the Lao Red Cross (LRC) and Ourworld Rural Development, organised a hygiene training session for Khangkhae villagers in Xieng Khouang province.

Over 80 villagers attended the 5-hr training session, during which topics such as water quality support, environmental protection, hygienic toilet usage and proper hand washing techniques were covered. The villagers were very enthusiastic about learning and actively participated in group activities and demonstrations.

Read more: Sunlabob conducts hygiene training at Xieng Khouang province

Sunlabob Director to conduct workshop at 5th Global YES Summit in Sweden

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Sunlabob Director Andy Schroeter has been invited to conduct a workshop at The 5th Global YES Summit - Rework the World, to be held in Leksand, Sweden from June 2-5. Over 2000 people from all over the world will be attending this renown summit, and the focus will be on 100 carefully selected initiatives that could provide the jobs of the future and help build a more socially, financially and ecologically sustainable world.

Over 135 projects will be featured at the summit, and Andy’s workshop on expanding solar energy use with rental models will be one of 55 workshops. The purpose of these workshops is for projects to present what new and innovative thinking they are bringing and also what challenges they are facing to go forward.

For more information on the The 5th Global YES Summit - Rework the World, please click here.

Sunlabob conducts information session on Solar Lantern Rental System in Afghanistan

In Mar 2010, Sunlabob conducted an information session on the commissioning of the Solar Lantern Rental System (SLRS) in Kabul, Afghanistan.

The purpose of the session, organised and funded by United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Afghanistan Small and Medium Enterprise Development (ASMED), and Development Alternatives, Inc. (DAI), was to educate potential Afghanistan partners on the lantern program. In 4 days, the comprehensive session covered topics such as installation, maintenance and troubleshooting issues, operational concepts, financial issues, and community facilitation with regards to the lantern approach.

Read more: Sunlabob conducts information session on Solar Lantern Rental System in Afghanistan

Video of Sunlabob's venture into Uganda now online

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In 2008, Sunlabob launched a south-south business initiative with Ugandan company TSSD. Now solar powered charging stations are operating in a number of remote Ugandan villages. The franchise came about thanks to a prize won at the World Bank Group's Lighting Africa Development Marketplace in 2008.

This proves that Sunlabob has once again spearheaded an innovative approach that has worldwide potential in rural electrification.

Watch this video for Sunlabob's venture into Uganda.

Sunlabob receives training on pico-hydropower systems from LIRE

On May 12, Sunlabob engineers and technicians attended a training session on pico-hydropower systems at the Lao Institute of Renewable Energy (LIRE).

Having spent the past 2 years conducting extensive research on pico-hydropower systems, LIRE brought plenty of valuable information to the training session. The training focused on new directions LIRE had envisaged on increasing efficiency and reducing losses for shared pico-turbines. Other topics such as installation and maintenance methods, appropriate areas to install the pico-hydro turbines, and possible safety hazards were also covered.

Read more: Sunlabob receives training on pico-hydropower systems from LIRE

Sunlabob organises training session for Village Water Committee in Ban Sor

In Feb 2010, Sunlabob, with the support of the Lao Institute of Renewable Energy (LIRE), organised a three-day training session for villagers in Ban Sor/Vientiane Province. The purpose of the training was to equip the Village Water Committee with the knowledge and skills to operate and maintain a solar-powered water purification system. The system, which sunlabob had installed in Sept 2008, has a huge impact on the villagers’ lives because it provides them with safe drinking water.

Read more: Sunlabob organises training session for Village Water Committee in Ban Sor

Growing demand for Sunlabob’s Energy Efficiency and Energy Audit services

The demand for Sunlabob’s energy efficiency and energy audit services is steadily rising. Since the establishment of the Sunlabob Energy Efficiency and Energy Audit department in April 2009, over 40 companies have expressed interest in engaging Sunlabob to reduce their energy spending.

Such a demand can largely be attributed to the fact that companies are becoming more aware of energy conservation, and realising that a significant amount of money can be saved as a result of an audit.

Sunlabob’s services are also well sought after because of the company’s immaculate reputation in the energy sector. Its innovative renewable energy programmes have won numerous international awards and its decade-long experience has made it a dominant player in both local and international markets.

Read more: Growing demand for Sunlabob’s Energy Efficiency and Energy Audit services

Lao Institute for Renewable Energy (LIRE) releases 2009 Annual Report

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LIRE, a non-profit organisation dedicated to the sustainable development of a self sufficient renewable energy sector in the Lao PDR, has just released their Annual Report for 2009.
Sunlabob is a commercial partner to LIRE and was instrumental in its foundation in 2006 along with other educational institutions and corporate organisations. The institute offers agronomical, technological and socioeconomic research services, and works to provide a free public resource of information and advice on the use of renewable energy technologies in Laos.
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Sunlabob’s Solar Lantern Rental System catches world's attention

As exemplified by the article dated 23/02/10, the Solar Lantern Rental System (SLRS) has received a lot of attention lately, from local and international partners. This shows the interest in this technology and promises a bright future for Sunlabob's system.

Below is a summary of the conferences and workshops where the SLRS has been presented towards the end of 2009 and the beginning of 2010:
  • Selected to feature in a UNDP comparative analysis of energy service delivery models for expanding access for the poor (case studies to be published soon).
  • 2nd International Scientific Conference on “Energy and Climate Change” (Athens, Greece, Oct 2009)
  • MIT Global Startup Workshop 2010 (Reykjavik, Iceland, Mar 2010)
  • World Bank/Department of Electricity Solar Lantern Workshop (Vientiane, Laos, Nov 2009)
  • UNESCAP Bazaar of Ideas (Bangkok, Thailand, Dec 2009)
  • Singapore Business Federation, Product-led Economy Seminar (Singapore, Dec 2009)

Sunlabob celebrates 10th anniversary

9 April 2010 marked a significant milestone for Sunlabob as it celebrated its 10th anniversary.

The day long celebrations started in the morning with Baci; a traditional Lao ceremony that is performed to bless the company with good luck and prosperity. This was followed by a party in the afternoon that saw plenty of traditional Lao dishes and beer going around. In true Lao spirit, staff also started water fights to mark the start of the Lao New Year which was to be celebrated the following week.

Read more: Sunlabob celebrates 10th anniversary

Sunlabob now offers Energy Audit services

Sunlabob established an Energy Efficiency and Energy Audit Department in April 2009, after seeing that companies could use a service to manage their energy usage more cost-effectively. Up to 50% can be saved after implementing solutions recommended from an energy audit.

In Jan 2010, Sunlabob completed its first energy audit at the Lao-German House. Based on Sunlabob’s recommendations, the Lao-German House implemented energy saving solutions such as installing cellulose into their roof thermal insulation, changing T8 fluorescent tubes for more efficient T5 tubes, and installing motion sensors in toilets to switch on and off lights automatically.

Read more: Sunlabob now offers Energy Audit services

Sunlabob awarded National Energy Globe Award for third consecutive year

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Sunlabob is proud to announce that it has been awarded the National Energy Globe Award for Laos for the third consecutive year. Its project “Implementing village hybrid grids to improve rural livelihoods” was selected by the international Energy Globe Jury, and the award will be presented at the Energy Globe national ceremony on 3 June in Rwanda’s capital Kigali.

Over 800 projects, presenting successful sustainable environmental initiatives or that employ renewable energy, are submitted from all over the world to compete for this annual award in the categories Earth, Fire, Water, Air and Youth.

For more information, please visit the Energy Globe website.

Sunlabob speaks to secondary school students about energy

Last month, Sunlabob provided four 1½-hour sessions to students of Vientiane International School (VIS) to complement their science curriculum. The students learnt about energy production, use, conservation, and efficiency. VIS students will now build upon what they have learnt during the sessions at Sunlabob by carrying out class projects on solar energy and energy waste reduction.

Sunlabob’s Solar Lantern Rental System (SLRS) to feature at New York exhibition

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This year’s National Design Triennial exhibition, organised by Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution in New York, will take place from 14 May 2010 to 9 January 2011. Entitled "Why Design Now?", the exhibition explores how designers are addressing human and environmental problems. Inaugurated in 2000, the Triennial series seeks out and presents the most innovative, forward-thinking designs at the centre of contemporary culture from the previous three years. This year’s exhibition showcases design solutions that promote environmental stewardship, social equity, accessibility and creative capital in more than 125 projects worldwide.

Spotted at the 2008 Tech Awards, in which Sunlabob’s SLRS was a laureate, the system will feature in the exhibition’s Energy category along with 18 other projects. A complete system will be displayed on a mock stand, including solar panels, a charging station, and six lanterns. In addition, the SLRS will have information, including video and audio material, presented on the exhibition’s iPod touch system – a walk-through device.

Beyond the actual design of the SLRS, the other features that attracted the museum curators to Sunlabob’s product include its innovativeness, mobility, sustainability, community engagement, and reuse and recycling of waste materials.

If you happen to be in New York during the exhibition, don’t miss it!

Shared Pico Hydropower Demonstration Project in Angsang Village Officially Opened

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With support from Sunlabob, LIRE (Lao Institute for Renewable Energy) completed the commissioning of an innovative shared pico-hydropower system with an official opening ceremony, held on 10th February 2010 in Angsang village, Huaphanh Province, with the participation of various representatives from government departments and offices at provincial and district levels.  These include Provincial Department of Energy and Mines, District Administration Office, District Energy and Mine Office, District Lao Women Union and local authorities.
The demonstration site was co-financed by the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany in Vientiane and the Bremen Overseas Research and Development Association (BORDA) as well as material, labour and financial contributions from Angsang village. The implementation was accomplished by a group of companies and organisations, namely by LIRE, the Institute for Hydropower Research (IHR) in Vietnam and Sunlabob Renewable Energy Ltd. All activities were executed within a close exchange and communication with the villagers, the Provincial Department of Energy and Mines (PDEM), and local authorities in Viengxay District.

Click here to read the full article.

Sunlabob in cooperation with Entec signs a Power Purchase Agreement with Electricité du Laos

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A Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) is a contract that allows an Independent Power Producer (IPP) to sell electricity that is independently generated to a power purchaser. In this PPA, which was signed on 4th January 2010 for a term of 25 years, the IPP is a Sunlabob-Entec cooperation, and the power purchaser is the Lao national electric utility, Electricité du Laos (EdL).

This PPA will enable the Sunlabob-Entec cooperation to expand its independent electricity-generating equipment (small hydropower) from a powerhouse at Ban Nam Kha to include a second larger powerhouse on the same river. For the first powerhouse completed in 2007, Sunlabob’s private partner, Entec, provided private investment into the project and engineering expertise, which included designing the turbine and civil structures, configuring the control electronics, supporting and checking all civil works carried out by Sunlabob staff, and assisting in project management.

Read more: Sunlabob in cooperation with Entec signs a Power Purchase Agreement with Electricité du Laos

Sunlabob receives official recognition for good business practices

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Ten Lao companies across all sectors of the economy were recently awarded recognition for excellent performance in the areas of business achievements and compliance with national regulations regarding tax and social security contributions. Sunlabob was the only company from the energy sector to receive this award.
The certificate was handed over to Mr Saleumphon Vongsakhamphoui, Sunlabob’s co-director (right), by Mr Anouphap Toulalom, Deputy Mayor of Vientiane (left).