BHEL & 5 PSUs to set up worlds largest solar plant

Written by fe Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: Jan 30 2014, 10:17am hrs
Six state-owned firms, including BHEL and Power Grid Corporation, on Wednesday signed an initial agreement for setting up the world's largest ultra mega solar power project in Rajasthan.

As per the pact, the 4,000 MW solar plant will be set up in phases up near Sambhar lake in the state with a total investment of R30,000 crore. The power generated will be available on the grid to met the needs of various states. The MoU has paved the way for setting up this project. Work will start soon after the agreement is ratified by the cabinet, minister for heavy industries and public enterprises Praful Patel said at the pact signing ceremony.

He said that once completed, the project will be the largest single location solar plant spread across 19,000 acre at Sambhar. The project is being developed to fasttrack the growth of green energy and reduce dependence on polluting carbon.

Apart from being environment friendly, solar projects have also become commercially viable with tariff under such projects coming close to commercial power rates at R6.5-7 per unit.

It is expected that the first 1000 MW phase of the project will be commissioned in two to three years with an investment of about R7,500 crore. The consortium will then start work on 3,000 MW in six phases of 500 MW each. The department of heavy industry will set up a joint venture company for executing the project. The company will have equity participation of 26% from BHEL, 23% from SECI, 16% from SSL, 16% from Power Grid, 16% from SJVNL and 3% from REIL. The project will come up on surplus land available with SSL in Sambhar. Equipment will be supplied by BHEL, power evacuation by Power Grid, sale of electricity by SECI, operation and maintenance by REIL and project management by SJVNL.

The plant is expected to supply 6,400 million units of energy a year and help redu-ce carbon dioxide emissions by 4 million tonne per year.