Light up Atauro, Timor-Leste
Phase One

Introducing d.light solar lanterns to communities in remote areas of Atauro Island, where 80 percent of the population have no access to electricity.

d.light S250
Solar lantern
  • Dual purpose solar light and solar mobile charger
  • Its bright white light illuminates a room similarly to a 3 to 5 Watt CFL lamp
  • Provides 10 times more light than a kerosene lantern
d.light S250 provides 10 times more light than a kerosene lantern

This project has been fully funded.
Thank you to all who contributed.


People on Atauro Island have very limited access to electricity. Of the 8,000 people living on the island, 6,800 have no access to electricity. The main village of Vila has a small electricity grid, but the generator frequently runs out of fuel, plunging homes into darkness.

Most people rely on kerosene lamps for lighting. Kerosene produces dim light and dirty smoke, and can cause injuries and housefires.  Many people also use flashlights, but buying batteries and kerosene is a financial drain for families on the island, where the average monthly income is US$99.

How we can help: 

We can connect d.light solar lanterns with families on Atauro, providing them with a clean, bright source of light. The solar lights will greatly reduce dependence on kerosene, saving families money and improving their health. Students will be able to study more easily at night, and people will also be able to use the solar lights to charge their mobile phones.

Who we are helping: 

Families on Atauro Island largely depend on subsistence agriculture, farming and fishing. Roughly half of the population is under the age of 18. 

Atauro is a little larger than the island of Manhattan. With mountains reaching up to 999m above sea level, most people live on the coast. The population is spread across five villages and 20 sub-villages.


Our local partner, Roman Luan, will meet with village leaders to establish a price that is affordable for the families who will benefit the most from the lights. The revenue will be returned to Kopernik to buy more solar lights for Atauro.

Timeframe for implementation: 
October 2011 - March 2012
Reaching 1020 people
Local Partner Contribution: 

Financial contribution:

  • Cost of domestic transportation from Dili to Atauro island
  • Per diem for staff introducing the lights to communities
  • Food for staff at training locations
  • Transportation and fuel to reach the remote locations

Non-financial contribution:

  • Developing the distribution system
  • Contacting local authorities
  • Monitoring and reporting
Project Costs: 
Cost TypeCost DescriptionCost Unit AmountCost QuantityCost Amount
Product - d.light S250
Cost of technology
International shipping
Clearance and local duty
Wire transfer fee
Kopernik 10%
Covers Kopernik's due diligence and project support costs
Fluctuations in currency exchange rates and shipping costs may change the final quantity of technologies we ship for this project.


Atauro Island DI

A huge Kopernik thank you to the 6 people who pitched in $6,770.00