DMRC exploring way to go 100 percent solar powered

By Editor


Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) is considering the possibility of purchasing electricity from a 500-megawatt solar facility in Rajasthan.

Hindustan Times, quoting unnamed government officials, reports that Delhi Metro could be fully powered by clean energy if the plan materializes.

According to DMRC, it would award power supply contract to a solar developer through an auctioning process and is looking at tariff below Rs6.94 per kilowatt hour.

The government official has told HT that the initial proposal for the purpose is expected to be moved within a week.

A DMRC spokesperson has told HT that the metro authority was looking at the dual advantage of carbon neutrality and insulation from rising electricity prices through the move.

Over the past five years, power prices in New Delhi have increased at the rate of 20 percent per annum. And DMRC’s electricity requirement is growing as it expands network.

At present, Delhi metro has peak power demand of 150MW. And when the third phase of the project is completed, it is likely to increase to 250MW.

A tiny portion of this requirement — about 1.2MW — is already being met using rooftop solar installations at DMRC’s facilities. But there is potential for capacity enhancement to 50 megawatts.

To meet the entire power requirement of Delhi Metro a solar power station of installed capacity of 500 megawatts will be required considering that the average plant load factor for solar power is in the range of 20 percent.

Plant load factor is the ratio of actual number of units a power generator supplies to a user to the maximum capacity the plant can deliver if it were to operate continuously at its maximum continuous rating.

A 500-MW solar facility requires an investment of about Rs3,000 crore at current rates.

HT reports that DMRC will have to work its way around the hurdle that Rajasthan does not allow banking of solar power.

The Electricity Act, which is set for amendment, may require some adjustment to make the proposal viable, the report adds.

Ajith Kumar S

[email protected]

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