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Photovoltaics Research by WMSU Eng’g faculty to “light up” Simariki Island
February 10, 2017

A Western Mindanao State University College of Engineering and Technology research on photovoltaics funded by the Commission on Higher Education under the grants for k-12 researches will light up and provide cheap water sources in a small island in Barangay Talon-Talon.

“Photovoltaic Power System is a medium for accessing or converting solar energy to electrical energy,” explains project leader Dr. Jessica Maria Paz Casimiro. According to her, the research aims to study the value chain on how to increase the value of photovoltaics or solar panels. The technology is common said Casimiro but there are accordingly so many uses of photovoltaics left undiscovered “and that is what we are trying to discover,” she added.

Along with Dr. Casimiro are five faculty members from the College of Engineering and Technology- Research Assistant Leaders Engr. Darry B. Junsay, PME and Engr. Antonio Angelo J. Limbaga, Engr. Aylene R. Ingkoh, Engr. Oscar S. Sicat, and Engr. Janueber J. Garcia, PME and one from the College of Liberal Arts- Prof. Nerlyne C. Concepcion. Since one of the requirements of the grant is to collaborate with another Higher Education Institution (HEI), two faculty members from the Universidad de Zamboanga-Engr. Mary Ann Beth L. Kong PECE and Engr. Jona Cristine Juntilla are also part of the research group-. Therefore, the working research group, according to Casimiro, is a multi-disciplinary and dynamic since they came from the different fields of Engineering and one from the Social Science.

The study has three components: (1) Capability building of the researchers and the University, (2) the Research itself, and (3) extension. In building the capability of the researchers, according to Casimiro, they will undergo intensive trainings on the operating procedures of the equipment and data gathering, the University too will be the venue for the establishment of the monitoring laboratory. Discussing on the Research component, Casimiro stressed out that the study will focus only on investigating some features of the photovoltaic that can increase its value and usefulness to the society. Dubbed as “Universidad para la Comunidad”, WMSU, through this research will be providing solar powered equipment, like a solar-powered rice cooker, solar-powered freezer or refrigerator, in an environment that needs these equipment in furthering their fishing business thus, slowly helping in alleviating poverty in Simariki Island.

Submitted in July 2015 to answer the call for proposal under the grants of CHED, the paper underwent thorough institutional reviews and revisions from 2015 to the approval in December 13, 2016 and each revision is an improvement and update of the previous one. “I feel so lucky having this project granted but it was not easy,” says Casimiro and According to Dr.