February 10, 2014

Tata Power integrates a micro-hydro turbine at its Bhira hydro power station in Maharashtra

10 kW micro hydro turbine at Bhira
New Delhi: Tata Power, India’s largest integrated power company, announced the successful commissioning of a 10kW micro-hydro project. The low-head, micro-hydro turbine installed in the tailrace of the 150MW Bhira hydro power station in Maharashtra utilises the existing flow rate available to generate sufficiently clean energy to manage its auxiliary loads. The micro unit was successfully synchronised to the grid.

The 150MW hydro station was started at Bhira about 90 years ago. The successful installation and commissioning of the 10kW, micro-hydro turbine is a new breakthrough for the Bhira project. The micro turbine is connected to the 415V auxiliary network. The invertors and other associated equipment required for synchronising the unit to the auxiliary grid was jointly developed by the Clean Technology Group and Tata Power engineers. Tata Power will now be in a position to add this facility at additional locations.

Speaking on this initiative, Mahesh Paranjpe, head, hydros, Tata Power, stated, “The successful installation and commissioning of the micro-hydro turbine is a significant milestone at Bhira. We are happy with this breakthrough.”

The micro-turbine generator was customised and indigenously manufactured in Mumbai by the Casmir Group based on the patented technology exclusively licensed from the University of Southampton. Other than onshore applications in tailraces of existing hydropower plants, rivers and canals, the turbine generator has a bi-directionality option designed to facilitate operations in tidal currents as well.

Speaking on the occasion, chief developer and designer Dr SM Sharkh of the University of Southampton said, “The pilot’s success is a significant milestone towards the development of a low-cost, clean energy solution based on simplicity, functionality and versatility of design.”

Ruta Samant from Casmir Group, said, “We are grateful for the expertise and invaluable support shown by the Tata Power teams during the field trial. Tata Power continues to be at the forefront of clean technology innovation and is clearly committed to sustainable development in the country. We, at Casmir Group, look forward to commercialising this scalable and frugally developed technology to have the maximum possible impact.”