Rural electrification with SWER is an inexpensive method of extending the electricity grid to rural areas.

SWER will reduce electrification costs to rural communities in developed and developing countries.

Rural electrification using SWER will directly and indirectly help to reduce poverty.

What does SWER stand for?

SWER stands for single wire earth return and reduces costs by using one wire instead of two and also reduces the quantity and therefore costs of poles.

We will show you how to use SWER to electrify your farm, village, water pump or rural business.

This site contains the background and resources to enable you to evaluate and use SWER.

SWER Examining Costs and Protection Methods

Recently we prepared a presentation for a workshop in Arusha, Tanzania that reviewed the costs and protection methods for SWER. The presentation also includes some links to data on SWER costs and protection (electrical) methods, the presentation can be accessed from the downloads page.

SWER in an Era of Low Cost Photovoltaic Systems

The cost of photovoltaic solar home systems for rural electrifcation has reduced in price over the last year and makes PV an atractive option for low cost, low demand rural electrification. However PV solar home systems still need a battery and low cost batteries are still some time off. In the interim people are still making use of lead acid batteries which are costly, have a finite life and require care and attention. The grid and SWER can step in and act as the battery when the sun doesn't shine.

SWER & Direct Current (DC)

On 7 November 2012 ABB anounced that they have perfected a fast acting low loss high voltage direct current circuit breaker. This opens the opportunity for using SWER at DC, previously referred to as "DC light". Where this would be useful would be for the connection of small to medium scale remote generation e.g. wind power or solar PV located on the top of a hill or in a desert. The new DC circuit breaker together with associated power electronics and SWER DC transmission will reduce the cost of connecting small and medium scale remote renewables to isolated and central grids. 

Site Update

Ruralpower.org has been updated. While we are still concentrating on SWER technology we well also look at conventional grid rural electrification technology i.e. two wire single phase electrifcation and three wire three phase electrification. Over time we aim to make the site more interactive and provide more dowloadable tools such as costing spreadsheets, pole top drawings, technical papers,  frequently asked questions (faq) section etc. 

Using PSS/Adept to analyze SWER Rural Electrification Networks.

The SWER Links section contains a Microsoft Power Point presentation showing you how to model SWER systems using PSS/Adept. This power system analysis package will enable you to analyze the voltage performance, losses, load flows etc. for SWER systems. You can now also download the early Mandeno paper on SWER.

 What is SWER >