Saturday November 25, 2017

World’s biggest rooftop solar plant inaugurated in Punjab

Spread across 82 acres, the solar plant will be able to generate around 150 lakh units annually, offsetting nearly 19,000 tonnes of carbon emissions per annum


PUNJAB: The world’s biggest rooftop solar plant, located at the Radha Soami sect headquarters in the Beas riverfront town of Punjab around 45 km from Amritsar, was officially inaugurated on Tuesday by Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal. The 11.5 MW rooftop solar energy plant is spread across an area of more than 82 acres and was built at a cost of Rs 139 crore by the Radha Soami Satsang Beas (RSSB). Encouraging the usage of green technology, the solar plant will be able to generate around 150 lakh units annually, which would offset nearly 19,000 tonnes of carbon emissions per annum.

The Punjab government had recently claimed that the state had set a national benchmark in solar power generation with a 172 times increase in just three years. Investment in the solar power sector increased from a small Rs.70 crore to over Rs.12,000 crore in 2015.

Related article: International Solar Alliance

With a goal to make Chandigarh a model solar city, the administration has planned to issue notifications making rooftop solar photovoltaic power plants compulsory for all buildings including commercial, government, semi-government and residential except residential areas with an area of less than 100 sq yards. Solar power plants have already been established on government buildings in the area, to encourage the general public.

Canal Top Solar Power Plant, Wikimedia Commons
Canal Top Solar Power Plant, Wikimedia Commons

From farmers having land holding of just four acres to MNCs, Punjab is seeing a solar revolution of sorts. Investors include NRIs, big corporates and foreign investors.
To promote solar plants, the Punjab government has already announced incentives for this sector to attract more investment.

According to the Indian Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, the potential for solar energy is highest in the country as compared to other renewable energy resources. India receives nearly 250 to 300 days of clear sunny weather across most parts of the country with an annual radiation supply of between 1600 to 2200 kWh/m2 which is equivalent energy potential to about 6,000 million GWh of energy per year.

Solar Resources in India, Wikimedia Commons
Solar Resources in India, Wikimedia Commons

Over the past one year itself, the installed solar power has increased by approximately 55% from 3743.97 MW to 6762.853 MW with Tamil Nadu having the most increase in installed solar power from 142.580 MW to 1061.820 MW.

The National Action Plan on Climate Change has pointed out that “India is a tropical country, where sunshine is available for longer hours per day and in great intensity. Solar energy, therefore, has great potential as future energy source. It also has the advantage of permitting the decentralized distribution of energy, thereby empowering people at the grassroots level”.

Successfully harnessing the heat producing capacities across the country, India can not only meet the energy requirements but also reduce dependence on fossil fuel produced energy.

(Inputs from IANS)


  1. Solar plants help in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and global warming and also decreases our collective dependence on fossil fuel. This is a great initiative to save fossil fuel.

  2. This is really a great initiative from Punjab govt. After Germany it should be now India’s turn to become fully GoGreen.

    • Solar panels generate so much energy in the daylight that any excess power gets stored into the utility grid and can be used at night.

    • Solar plants generate so much energy in day time that any excess energy gets stored in the utility grid and can be used at night.

  3. solar energy not only reduce our dependence on fossil fuels but also help in reducing the pollution raised by the emissions and that’s why switching to solar energy is a great initiative


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Chennai startup comes out with power-saver device for solar units


New Delhi: In a significant development that could give a big boost to the adoption of solar energy in power-starved countries like India, a Chennai-based startup has come out with a unique device – a dual mode micro-inverter.

Kripya Technologies, a Chennai-based company established by Dr V G Veeraraghavan in 2010, inspired by the 11th president of India late Dr A P J Abdul Kalam, has come out with the cost-saving inverter that functions in on-grid as well as off-grid modes.

“A significant fall in the cost of photovoltaic solar panels has made solar energy a very competitive and viable alternative to fossil fuel-based generators. Despite this, solar energy adoption in developing countries like India has remained puzzlingly low,” said Veeraraghavan, a US-based industry veteran with over 40 years of technology management expertise.

“At Kripya, therefore, we examined the factors that will help increase adoption of solar energy by everyone irrespective of their geographic location and economic status and designed the dual mode micro inverter,” he said.

Typically, an inverter is used to convert the DC power generated by the solar panel into readily usable AC power. The inverters currently available in the market are all designed to function solely, either using power supplied by the grid or expensive battery in off-grid mode, requiring two different sets of devices.

Focusing on solar power units such as rooftop installations, the Kripya team realised that the grid-connected inverters have to depend on the vagaries of power supply as a necessary input for the conversion of DC to AC, while the off-grid inverters rely on very expensive battery storage for storing the electricity prior to conversion to AC.

These are serious limitations for the adoption of solar energy in developing countries like India where the grid power is not always available — and even when it is available, the reliability of grid power is low, Veeraraghavan said.

In addition, the team also recognised that conventional string inverters — connected to a group of solar panels — are not optimal for capacities less than 10 KVA for homes and small offices, due to lower efficiency and perennial load shedding that plagues many cities and towns.

The Kripya team thus conceived and developed the Dual Mode Micro-inverter to resolve these issues and facilitate easy adoption of distributed solar energy generation in developing countries.

Micro-inverters offer the added advantages of modularity, scalability, maximum power efficiency, real time optimisation and superior means for monitoring and control of the overall system.

Kripya has already filed for patent for the dual mode inverter which is easy to install and use in a plug-and-play mode with minimal or no wiring required.

The inverter can dynamically detect and switch modes based on the availability of grid power.

As the available solar radiation and associated photovoltaic energy can change even during the day, Kripya has also developed a micro-processor- based load manager which works in conjunction with the Dual Mode Micro-inverter. The load manager has a feature to segment the loads and assign a different priority to the different load circuits of the solar energy system

During operation, the load manager will automatically manage the segmented load circuits connected to the solar energy system and turn off the non-critical circuits while maintaining the critical circuits on when the available harvested solar energy is less than what is needed for supporting all the circuits.

“Kripya is very proud to have developed the products that offer cost effective means for adoption of solar energy by combining innovation, social and environmental consciousness,” Veeraraghavan said.


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Raje woos Japanese investors


NewsGram Staff Writer

Jaipur: Highlighting the huge potential of the state, Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje on Monday urged Japanese companies to invest in the state.

As a delegation of Kansai Economic Federation, one of Japan’s representative economic organizations, called on her, Raje told them that her state offers potential and scope in automobile, ceramic, solar, water recycling, waste management and skill development besides other sectors and invited the Japanese companies to invest in these.

“Rajasthan and Japan have deep commercial and trade relations and Resurgent Partnership Summit to be held in November will further help to strengthen these trade relations,” she said.

Resurgent Rajasthan Partnership Summit to be held in Jaipur on November 19-20 is expected to bring together investors from all over the world for interacting with policy makers, including the political leadership, government officials and, local business leaders on the investment environment and opportunities in the state.

Raje, who had visited Japan earlier this year to drum up investment said that her visit “was very fruitful and slowly-slowly we are seeing encouraging results”.

Masayuki Matsushita, vice chairman of Kansai Economic Federation said that the Japanese delegation has come here to study investment opportunities in the state, which can benefit from expertise of Japanese companies in waste disposal, water management and green energy.

(With inputs from IANS)

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Jayant Sinha calls for investing in Indian start-ups to encourage innovation


NewsGram Staff Writer

Panaji: Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha, stressing on the need to encourage a culture of innovation in the country, urged India  Inc. to make investments in the country’s start-ups to address the nation’s problems.

“In order to encourage innovation in India, we need to invest in Indian start-ups that address Indian problems. As a market, we have tremendous opportunities in India, and the same innovations are finding markets in other economies too,” he said at the inaugural edition of the Global Business Forum(GBF) , an initiative of Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay alumni association, held near Panaji.

Sinha also said that places like Powai, in Mumbai, where the IIT-B is located and Bengaluru; upcoming townships like Gurgaon should be developed as innovation hubs for India.

“The way we see it, these factors place our future in our own hands and I can see how Powai – home to IIT Bombay, and Gurgaon and Bengaluru can be the innovation hubs for the 6 billion people that inhabit the developing world,” he said.

The GBF is aimed at creating impactful technological innovations in products and services through focused dialogue based on national priorities like education, skill, infrastructure, healthcare, smart cities, energy, Information Communication technology, environment (Water) and the Make in India campaign.

(With inputs from IANS)