South Western Railways to tap 1,000 MW solar power
Indian Railways has planned to produce about 1000 MW solar power and about 200 MW of wind power progressively by 2021-22 across Zonal Railways and Production Units
Hubballi: Indian Railways has planned to produce about 1000 MW solar power and about 200 MW of wind power progressively by 2021-22 across Zonal Railways and Production Units. Towards this goal, 500 MW solar plants are being installed on the rooftop of railway buildings which will be used to meet non-traction loads at railway stations, etc. About 500 MW of land-based solar plants will be used to meet both traction and non-traction requirements.
South Western Railway (SWR) is one of the zones which has taken giant strides in energy conservation by harnessing solar energy.
One of the significant actions taken in this direction has been the installation of solar panels at stations, service buildings, LC gates etc across the zone. SWR claims this will not only help in meeting the power needs of all the stations but also save expenditure for the railways.
The Zone has provided 4.37 MW plants on developer (Renewable Energy Supply Co) mode and also 165 kWp solar plant through the zone. These solar plants are provided at 128 stations rooftop (major stations - Hubballi, KSR Bengaluru, Mysuru, Yesvantpur, Hosapete, Gadag & Ballari) and service buildings at Rail Soudha, West & Central Wing, Divisional Railway Manager's Office, Hubballi, Railway Hospital-Hubballi, Divisional Railway Manager's Office, Bengaluru, Parcel Office, Bengaluru, Railway Hospital, Bengaluru, Divisional Railway Manager's Office, Mysuru.
The workshops and sheds have also been provided with solar rooftop plants. Also, 221 level crossings are provided solar photovoltaic cell lights. The solar electricity generation in last year was 4.4 million units which are expected to increase to 4.664 million units this year subject to sunny days and insulation.
According to the reports, this has resulted in saving in electricity bills to the tune of Rs. 1.78 crore last year and expected saving of Rs. 1.88 crores in this financial year. SWR is planning to go for land-based solar plants at trackside lands and also vacant railway lands.