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International experience has shown that it is almost impossible to operate technical infrastructure in rural areas on a sustainable basis without the support of regular and effective maintenance and repair services. This is the case in Chitral, a landlocked district in Pakistan, where many of the micro-hydro power plants were built prior to 2009, are poorly designed and are operated by inadequately trained personnel.
The Micro-Hydro Resource & Service Centre (MRSC) specifically aims to improve the sustainable operation of micro-hydro plants by providing economically sustainable maintenance and repair services. Therefore, the MRSC is managed in a business-like manner and provides its services on a commercial basis. Communities operating micro-hydro plants have to pay appropriate fees for training and product servicing.
The MRSC was launched in October 2017 with a number of introductory and promotional workshops. The centre consists of a fully equipped workshop suitable for making major repairs and overhauling micro-hydro equipment. The MRSC also hosts training facilities for regular operator training sessions and refresher courses. The key feature is the servicing infrastructure, which is maintained by well-trained service technicians working both at the MRSC and at a number of remote servicing points throughout the Chitral district. The remote servicing point technicians provide preventive maintenance and basic repair services in a defined servicing zone consisting of around 20 micro-hydro plants.
The concept is not technology specific and could be replicated in virtually any rural infrastructure context.
More general information is available on our SEPS Project page: Micro Hydro Power Resource & Services Centre in Chitral, Pakistan