Visaka’s solar roofing to power Air India SATS’ walkways


Visaka Industries, a Telangana-based sustainable product developer, has announced that airport services provider Air India SATS has chosen its ATUM-integrated solar roofing system for off-grid, air-conditioned walkways it is developing in Hyderabad.

The air-conditioned, sloping walkways are expected to provide greater levels of comfort to airline passengers, in addition to smoother access for people with limited mobility. The ATUM-integrated solar roofing system serves as a traditional roof whilst offering 20% more output than conventional solar panels, according to Visaka Industries. It has integrated solar panels with a fibre cement base that regulates temperature with higher efficiency.

Air India SATS Airport Services’ ATUM walkways consist of eight 2.5 kW ATUM solar panels that charge four batteries of 150 Ah each. This off-grid solution — capable of withstanding rooftop loads of more than 300 kg — can provide enough electricity to run two 0.75-ton air-conditioners for up to six hours. The fire-resistant and shockproof walkways can also withstand winds up to 200 kilometres per hour.

“ATUM will be an essential roofing solution in the near future for any application that requires power and a roof,” said Vamsi Gaddam, Visaka Industries’ joint managing director. “With ATUM being used extensively as a roofing solution for industrial, commercial and residential applications, we can soon make the solar dream a reality.”

Air India SATS Airport Services CEO Ramanathan Rajamani described the walkways as having the first such “integrated hybrid solar roofing system” in India. “Once implemented, this unique ramp will provide an enhanced level of comfort and ease to all our customers with smooth access for people with reduced mobility while boarding an aircraft,” said Rajamani. “We hope to replicate this in other airports in the country.”

Founded in 1983, Visaka Industries has multiple product portfolios, ranging from hybrid solar roofs to corrugated cement sheets, fiber cement boards and manmade fiber yarn.

Air India SATS Airport Services is a 50:50 joint venture between Air India and SATS Ltd., a gateway services and food solutions provider in Asia.  As part of the Indian government’s initiative to upgrade its airports to world-class facilities and attract more airlines to fly into India, it was formed to provide world-class airport services in ground and cargo handling.

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