Weekly Rundown: Indian railways to install net meters in their rooftop solar

March 21, 2020by absrenewpower

  1. Kerala approved to set up 50 MW rooftop solar installation

Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) gets approval from the Kerala State Electricity Regulatory Commission (KSERC) to install 50 MW rooftop solar PV systems. The move comes after MNRE has issued incentives to DISCOMs for successfully installing more than 18 MW rooftop solar installation. Also, the components of the Phase II program initiated by the MNRE states that DISCOMs will be provided Central Financial Assistance (CFA) on setting more than 4 GW rooftop solar installation.

For all residential solar PV systems installer, a CFA of 40% of the benchmark cost will be provided for a maximum of 3 kW solar capacity. For solar installation above 3 kW to 10 kW, 20% CFA would be provided. A similar subsidy would be provided for residential welfare associations or housing societies installing solar PV systems up to 500 kW.

To further encourage domestic consumers to go solar, the KSEB has also proposed certain incentives based on their consumption.


  1. Solar PV systems to power 15 water treatment and sewage projects in Gujarat.

Post-Gujarat Chief Minister’s approval to install solar PV systems to power water treatment and sewage projects. It is estimated to cost approximately ₹136.1 million to generate 2,835 kW of solar electricity. The project is set to save approximately ₹29.4 million in utility costs.

The project is said to power 15 water treatment and sewage projects across 11 areas in the states that include Ankleshwar, Bardoli, Botad, Jambusar, Navsari, Songadh, Surendranagar, Umargam, Unjha, Vijalpore, and Vyara. The state government has also encouraged residents to imply solar panels for home usage by offering subsidies. The state government has announced ₹10 million to be allocated as subsidies.


  1. 10 MWWater solar installation in Murshidabad

The West Bengal Power Development Corporation Limited (WBPDCL) is in a process to install 10 MW floating solar PV systems to power the Sagardighi Thermal Power Project in Murshidabad. This is not the first floating solar project as BHEL also issued a tender for 5 MW to power their coal-powered plant with solar in Sagardighi.


  1. Researchers claim to have achieved 25% efficiency with thin-film solar cells.

Researchers from the Hasselt University, Interuniversity Microelectronics Centre (imec), VITO, EnergyVille, and PERCISTAND consortium claim to have achieved a 25% efficiency using a thin-film solar cell.

Generally, efficiency rates range between 17-21% depending on the region and solar panel used. Researchers claim that new development can achieve 25% energy efficiency and be implemented on solar panels for homes and businesses. The group of researchers also claim that they can develop the panels to achieve 30% energy efficiency in the next 3 years.

These thin-film solar cells can be used to develop solar panels of different colors and sizes and will be available in the market in the next 8 years.


  1. Net Metering for 4MW rooftop solar projects to be implemented by Southern Railways

The Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) has been ordered by the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission (TNERC) to provide the Southern railway with high- and low-tension net metering for 4 MW rooftop solar installation.

Similarly, the Uttar Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission (UPERC) had previously installed net metering for 10 MW rooftop solar projects of the Noida Metro Rail Corporation (NRMC).

The move comes after the Indian railway’s heavy investment in renewable systems. The idea to make the switch was to generate clean energy while reducing their utility costs. The Railways have targeted to set up 1000 MW of solar PV systems by 2022. From the target set, they have already issued a request to set up 32.56 MW of rooftop solar PV systems across the zonal railway stations in the country.


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