To save money, check your roof

To save money, check your roof

CheckRoof, a data analytics and ML powered platform, calculates the amount of water a house can save through rainwater harvesting, the solar energy that can be generated

How can the roof of a house be of an advantage in conserving natural resources? An engineering graduate from BITS Pilani, Chandradeo Arya has taken the onus of finding a solution for this by making best use of technology.

Data Analytics and Machine Learning powered social impact startup, CheckRoof, was founded by Chandradeo Arya in March 2019. The Delhi-based startup is registered under the company name, Gaitx Systems Private Limited.

Arya worked for two multinational companies before quitting the corporate life so as to embark on the entrepreneurial journey.

The project initially took off by technically addressing the problems related to harvesting of rainwater, and later, with advancement in the platform, the same technology is now used to measure solar power and energy conservation.

"During summer, I was in Chennai visiting a friend. The society he was staying in, was facing scarcity of water, despite the government making rainwater harvesting mandatory. In developing countries there is high demand, but supply is limited.

The simple solution is harvesting rainwater or solar energy. People are aware about the concept but not of its benefits. The gap in information of how much water can be saved, how much would it cost, whom to contact for getting the work done etc., has led many away from adopting rain water harvesting," Chandradeo Arya, founder and CEO of Gaitx Systems Private Limited, told The Hans India.

He further said, "This thought of making everyone understand the amount they would be saving by conserving natural resources led to the development of this platform. For working on this project, I collaborated with two friends as co-founders."

CheckRoof, is all about, what can the roof of a house do for an individual. Under one platform, there are three segments, RainRoof, SunRoof and CoolRoof.

RainRoof supports in recharging ground water, SunRoof is the amount of solar energy that can be generated, and CoolRoof is about, how much energy can be saved by painting the roof in white.

CheckRoof calculates the amount of natural resource that can be saved by using satellite imagery, 3D mapping and data analytics of historical data. The data is sourced from government bodies, private organisations such as AirBus and Google Maps.

Arya explains, "Once a customer enters the CheckRoof portal, they have to mention the address of their house. Through Google Map, the house will be located. After the house is identified, a boundary demarking the roof needs to be drawn on the platform.

The system will then read the historical data of the house, the area, status of ground water, temperature of the area etc.

With this data, the platform measures the amount of water that can be saved by rainwater harvesting, the solar energy that can be generated through installing solar panel and energy saved by painting the roof in white, is calculated."

If the house is facing lack of sun light or if there isn't sufficient rain fall in that given area then CheckRoof will not recommend to take up installation of rain water harvesting or solar panels, he said, adding that however, during summer if the roof is painted in white colour, then the temperature of the house reduces by 5-6 degree Celsius, as white paint reflects 60 – 70 per cent of the light falling on the roof, which means every degree saved on the air conditioner will save 10 per cent of the cost on electricity.

The startup is looking for collaborations with government departments and other private organisations to promote this concept by adapting it at their premises. Currently, RainRoof is operational in Hyderabad only.

Under which, the portal has generated report for 100 houses, free of cost. From these 100, the startup has already installed three rainwater harvest mechanism and 83 installations will take place by next year. In this city, they have a tie-up with two vendors. The price range starts from Rs 6,000.

At present, for SunRoof, along with the other calculations, only information about the cost of installation, the government subsidy, and banks providing loan is provided, as the founder is yet in the process of on boarding trustworthy vendors.

The same is with CoolRoof, as Arya informed that the advanced format of paint is being developed which will have the capacity to reflect 80 per cent of light.

As primarily, CheckRoof is dependent on the government for data, they are also in the process of sourcing different data in Delhi, Telangana, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu.

Once, the platform is uploaded with the needed data, Arya says they will be commercially operational in the next six months.

By that period, they will have collaboration with vendors in these States and the hardware will also be available. The startup is developing a water monitoring system with IoT sensor in the water filter which the vendor will utilise.

The revenue will be generated through sales of the hardware, the paint, percentage on installation charges and through taking up rainwater management system for the State governments at Panchayat level.

CheckRoof has three cofounders, including Arya, along with three people in the technical team. Going ahead they will add two people into operations.

The startup was initially funded through bootstrap and later an undisclosed amount of fund was raised from an angel investor.

The fund has been utilised for sourcing data, satellite imagery, cost of servers etc. By next year, the founder is looking to raise over Rs 1 crore.

The startup is selected under an acceleration programme for social startups at Atal Innovation Centre.

CheckRoof which has been sourcing satellite data from AirBus, won the AirBus Global Earth Observation Challenge at Toulouse in France, for coming with a new and innovative project that has been built using their satellite -- a feat achieved after competing with 141 companies from 50 countries.

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