Total savings :One SHS with 2 LED-lamps saves about 0,25t CO₂, atmosfair does not take these savings into account;
Technology transfer :Solar Home Systems with LED-lamps
Local environment :No smoke emissions due to kerosene lamps anymore: Reduction of risks of respiratory diseases
Further advantages :Creation of jobs for installation and maintenance of the solar-powered LED-lamps
Project partners :fosera Ethiopia, fosera Germany, German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ), Institute for Decentralized Electrification, Entrepreneurship and Education GmbH & Co. KG (id-eee)

Unused potential of the sun

Ethiopia is one of the poorest countries according to the Human Development Index (HDI) and at the same time the most populous landlocked country in the world. Especially the rural areas are often densely populated. Nevertheless, they lack many necessities like nationwide power supply. Currently only 33 percent of the population is connected to the grid. Even though 96.2 percent of the urban population has a grid connection, the rural areas are much left behind with more than 73 percent lacking any access to electricity. [1]  Therefore, many Ethiopians use kerosene lamps, which are incredibly inefficient, expensive and harmful for the climate and health.

On the other hand, Ethiopia is largely endowed with sunshine. Solar energy systems fit for household use are already partly available in the country. However, they are imported goods of inferior quality that often break down after a few months and thus threaten people’s trust in solar energy systems.

Quality meets efficiency and sustainability

The Solar Home System project, which is implemented by atmosfair together with the young company fosera Manufacturing in Ethiopia, strives to effectively counteract this problem. Together, the project partners provide households with high quality yet affordable solar systems. In contrary to many mobile solar lamps, fosera is producing fixed installations, which can be supplemented with up to four lamps. One Solar Home System with two lamps can save approximately 0.25 t  per year in comparison to the usage of kerosene lamps. fosera implements sales in the rural areas of Ethiopia with already existing seller and retailer networks.

atmosfair provides the financial resources for the project, which fosera only has to pay back partially. In return, the company guarantees to produce and distribute Solar Home Systems at a low market price. Until today, more than 13.000 systems have been produced and sold.

Many families in Ethiopia are happy when they can come home in the evening and operate a light switch. They also have the opportunity to recharge their mobile phones, because for many Ethiopians these are an elementary tool on which they depend for example for mobile banking. A further benefit for the households is the reduction of smoke pollution and the money saved in the long term, as they can now refrain of the use of kerosene lamps.

Our partners

fosera Manufacturing was founded as a private company in 2014 in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia’s third largest city, where it has establishing a local assembly for the solar home systems. fosera can build on the technical and managerial knowhow of their holding company fosera Germany located near Ulm, Germany. Thomas Koepke is the general manager of fosera Ethiopia, and has worked for many years in the solar energy industry in Germany and Africa. Currently 15 employees work for fosera Ethiopia. The explicitly local approach of the production and assembly shall enable many younger Ethiopians to gain and utilize their competences in renewable energies, a job market of the future.

The German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ) provided funds for the project within the framework of the Energizing Development Programme, with which we had a mobile phone-based monitoring system and an online database developed. GIZ also provided financial support for the implementation of a total of 7 training courses for students and lecturers and 13 training courses for entrepreneurs in Ethiopia to help expand national knowledge and skills in solar technologies in Ethiopia.

The Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)/Institute of Technology Assessment and Systems Analysis (ITAS) commissioned two final theses on potential environmental hazards and possible disposal paths of modern accumulator systems as used in the project.

The Institute for Decentralized Electrification, Entrepreneurship and Education GmbH & Co. KG (id-eee) is a private institute for applied research and project management. Based on more than 30 years of professional experience in the field of photovoltaics, the founder and university professor Prof. Peter Adelmann, teaches lecturers and students of the University of Bahir Dar about photovoltaic technology and maintenance.



[1] World Bank (2018):

Your contact at atmosfair

Dr. Ute Werner
Project Manager
+49 (0) 30 120 84 80 - 36