<i>By Simon Collings, GVEP International

GVEP International Blog: http://goo.gl/j4psF</i>

The results of a field trial of several award winning solar lanterns recently published by GIZ on energypedia.info makes sobering reading. After three months of use in rural Uganda homes few of the lanterns emerged with a glowing score card. Only one – the Solux 10o – came close to being able to fully replace a kerosene hurrican lamp.

Several significant lessons emerge from the research. A large contributor to the poor performance was the failure of users to charge the lanterns each day. Customer education remains a challenge. But there is obviously also scope for improving product design. Interestingly users seemed prepared to pay for quality – an encouraging finding for manufacturers.