Report Number




Disaster Relief; Photovoltaics


Hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, earthquakes, and other disasters can happen any place, any time. Major disasters destroy homes and businesses, and leave many people without adequate medical services, portable water, electrical service and communications. In response to the need for electrical service, solar energy offers a source of quite, safe, pollution-free power. Over the last few years, photovoltaic (solar electricity) power systems have provided energy for various disaster all over the country. Photovoltaics (PV) have been used to power vaccine refrigerators, medical equipment, lighting, radios, fans, communications, traffic devices and other electrical equipment. Previously, photovoltaics have supplied emergency power for Hurricane Hugo and Andrew, and the earthquake at Northridge in Southern California. This report presents the history of real life applications of photovoltaic powered equipment used for disaster relief efforts.

A summary is provided on each known application up to 1996.

Date Published


Local Subjects

Disaster Relief; Photovoltaics


FSEC Energy Research Center® Collection



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