May 30, 2012
The solar industry is expected to grow by leaps and bounds and will churn out more than three lakh jobs by 2022. SANGEETA YADAV brings you a report on this growing sector and the job opportunities it has to offer
India aspires to become a major global solar player in the world and, for this reason, it is expected that the country will see a a growing demand for skilled manpower for solar stations at the grassroots level.
“To take the renewable mission forward, the country needs to to adopt greater transparency, benchmarking and monitoring, strategic approaches to finance and technology neutral policies for manufacturing. Gujarat is the leading State which has used this affordable technology efficiently. They have come up with solar farms which generates a lot of electricity. This eco-friendly and technically more durable power storing solution has become the need of the hour,” Srikanth Chandrasekaran, chairman, IEEE SIG for India, tells you.
The solar industry has become a favourite investment destination for foreign investors as well. The demand for solar products has been rising rapidly. “The Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission that aims at generating 20,000 MW power a year by 2022 under the National Solar Mission (NSM), would need three lakh people across all domains, profiles and levels. But there is a lack of technical job-specific skills, many of which are related to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM),” Debasish Paul Choudhury, president, SEMI India, says.
“For every 10 jobs created in solar factories, there will be 15 jobs created downstream, in installation, financing, project development, and distribution. Globally around 8 lakh people are employed in the solar industry, with 3,00,000 people in Europe alone. Currently, US solar industry employs about 1,50,000 people, and approximately 6,000 people are employed in the Indian solar industry. The solar industry will require 60-65 per cent electrical engineers, 20-25 per cent mechanical engineers, 10 per cent electronics engineers and remaining civil engineers in areas where technical expertise is required,” Choudhury elaborates.
The course duration varies from a week, six months or even an extensive two to three years course depending on the institute and the extent of programme. To address the needs of the solar photovoltaic (PV) industry, various training programmes are been delivered by leading academic and industry experts. Various organisations conduct events at a larger scale like Solarcon India 2012 which will be taking place from September 3 to 5, 2012 at the Bangalore International Exhibition Center, Bangalore. This aims to provide a platform for the industry, Government, NGOs and other eco-system partners to come together and evolve plans for the growth of the local industry.
There is plethora of job profiles in this sector. From project head, engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) head to project directors, GM operations/project, senior manager projects, manager projects, purchase manager, solar project design engineer, assistant technical manager et al there are positions aplenty.
SKILLS AND ELIGIBILITY REQUIRED
Students must have completed higher secondary education in Science stream as a minimum eligibility criterion. Engineering graduates or final year engineering students are also eligible for masters courses. Whether an individual aspires to work in a social, corporate, or non-profit organisation, a course in solar renewable resources places you on the right track to landing a job.
Entry level positions start from trainee engineers in manufacturing, system and project design, installation, operation and maintenance, procurement et al. Today, a fresher/trainee engineer in a solar company can earn a salary ranging from Rs 20,000 to Rs 25,000 per-month. However, a candidate with a master’s degree can earn between Rs 35,000 to Rs 40,000 per month depending on one’s personal skillset. Currently, professionals with 8 to 10 years’ experience in the solar industry are earning a salary of Rs 25 lakhs per annum.
WHERE TO STUDY
- National Centre for Photovoltaic Research and Education, IIT Bombay
- Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission of the Government of India.
(The article was published in Pioneer Newspaper’s Avenues section).