Gujarat to set up roof on road project for highways

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Greentech Lead Asia: The Gujarat government is planning to set up solar-roof-on-road project that covers major roads and highways.

Scientists at the Gujarat Energy Research and Management Institute (GERMI) have proposed a pilot solar power project at a Gujarat state highway.

According to them a solar roof cover on the 205 km Ahmedabad-Rajkot highway can generate 104 megawatts (MW) of electricity.

The 93 km Ahmedabad – Vadodara highway can generate 61 MW solar power.

The project, if implemented on a national scale, can address a vast majority of energy needs in the country.

According to the project team, the 5,839 km Golden Quadrilateral Highway that connects the four Indian metropolitan cities can host 4,418 MW through solar roof cover and the 7,300 km North-South-East-West Corridor highway which runs across the length and breadth of India can be covered with 5,524 MW of solar power capacity.

The solar roof will be built on elevated structures that can also be used for rainwater harvesting.  The solar roof can also be extended to the railway network to supply power to the trains and help reduce the dependence of Indian Railways on diesel.

The solar industry in India has gone from 22MW of installed capacity in January 2011 to over 1GW at the end of October 2012 (all PV).  India plans to achieve 22,000 MW of installed solar power capacity by 2022 under National Solar Mission and other schemes.

Gujarat is one of the largest contributors to the solar power in India.

Gujarat introduced a solar power policy in the state in 2009, even before the introduction of the National Solar Mission. The current policy is in operation till 2014 and had an initial target of 500 MW.

As of October 30th 2012, 708.81 MW has been commissioned under the Gujarat Policy, according to Bridge to India’s India Solar Handbook 2012.

In April 2012, Gujarat government dedicated a 600 MW solar power park, touted as Asia’s first and largest such facility, in the state’s Patan district.

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