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Evaluating the quality of the led lamps that are appropriate for use with off-grid solar home systems (SHS) in Bangladesh
Almost 75% of the rural Bangladeshi-population does not have access to grid electricity. The solar home systems (SHS) program in Bangladesh, which is managed by the Infrastructure Development Company Limited (IDCOL), has provided millions of rural Bangladeshis with access to electric lighting. LED lamps are a key energy efficient appliance used with off-grid SHS. The goal of this research is to collect and analyze data about the quality and performance of LED lamps sold in the Bangladesh market. Fieldwork and laboratory testing using methods specified in IEC Technical Specification 62257-12-1 were used to collect information about the use, sales, quality, and performance of these lamps. The results showed that the IDCOL-approved lamps had higher performance and better durability than the local-market products, although the former products were more expensive. The average prices of the IDCOL-approved and local-market products were Bangladeshi Taka (BDT) 457 ($5.83) and 113 ($1.44), respectively. The average lumen output values for IDCOL-approved and local-market lamps were similar at 259 lm and 247 lm, respectively, but the average luminous efficacy for IDCOL-approved products was much higher, at 83 lm/W, than the corresponding value for the local-market lamps, at 50 lm/W. The IDCOL-approved products also performed better with regard to durability metrics such as lumen maintenance and workmanship quality. A performance analysis shows that households can receive about 66% more lighting service, measured in lumen hours per day, by using IDCOL-approved LEDs rather than local-market products. This research highlights the importance of laboratory testing to ensure the quality of LED lamps in the Bangladesh SHS market.