Pay-as-you go solar




1. Sustainability Problem: Energy

More than 620 million people, about two-thirds of the population in Sub-Saharan Africa, do not have access to an electrical grid. These populations rely on the use of Kerosene that contributes to CO2 emissions and indoor air pollution.

2. Technology Summary

  • M-Kopa IV Solar Home System is a pay-as-you-go home solar system that combines uses micro payments and mobile technology to provide electricity to people in Africa who are not connected to the electrical grid.
  • The system is rent-to-own: the unit requires a deposit of $35 and then customers make 365 payments of $0.43 though M-Pesa, a mobile money system to purchase the system.
  • The unit includes a solar panel, a control unit, two LED light bulbs, one portable LED flashlight, a rechargeable radio, and a USB port for charging cellphones

3. Stakeholders

  • NGOs
  • Electricity companies in Africa
  • Individuals without connection to electrical grid
  • Governments
  • M-Pesa
  • M-Kopa

4. Deployment

  • Increase awareness of product by performing demonstrations in common community areas
  • Provide thorough training and education to customers on proper use and maintenance of solar systems
  • Strengthen repair services and customer service to allow for effective trouble shooting of problems and to complete repairs, if necessary



Supporting article:

Company website:

Comment on Automated Underground Bike Storage Technology

  • A key feature of this technology is that instructions are given via audio and visuals, making this technology easy to use for first time users and accessible for those who may not speak the language or for those who ma have an impairment.



2 thoughts on “Pay-as-you go solar

  1. I think this is a great idea to provide affordable and renewable energy to people who current do not have access to electricity. The finance option built-in to the product also improve the likelihood of acceptance. It may been more appealing if a electricity storage unit is built-in to the solar system so that people could still use stored electricity during cloudy or rainy days. The storage unit does not need to be very high in capacity but only enough to recharge cellphones or other essentials so that the entire system could still be economically attractive.


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