Indian Railways is poised to initiate operations from its largest solar plant located in Bhilai, Chhattisgarh.
50-MW Solar Plant Highlights Indian Railways’ Commitment Towards Green Energy
Indian Railways is primed to launch operations from its largest solar power plant situated in Bhilai, Chhattisgarh. This 50-megawatt (MW) solar photovoltaic plant signifies a significant leap from the 1.7 MW unit that was commissioned last year in Bina, under the West Central Railway in neighbouring Madhya Pradesh.
An Initiative Promoting Renewable Energy
Capitalising on its expansive and unoccupied areas to foster renewable energy, Indian Railways has set up this new solar plant at Charoda, situated near a national highway in Bhilai. The plant falls under the jurisdiction of the Raipur Division of the South East Central Railway (SECR) zone.
Making Indian Railways Greener
“This is the largest solar plant of the Indian Railways. Such endeavours align with our aim to make Indian Railways more eco-friendly. We are constantly working towards reducing our carbon footprint by escalating our use of renewable energy, and planning more solar plants in different regions,” stated Vipin Vaishnav, the senior divisional commercial manager of the Raipur Railway Division.
Details about the Bhilai Solar Plant
The solar plant is spread over 200 acres and houses 1,54,500 solar photovoltaic panels. It successfully underwent two trials in May and June. SECR officials highlighted that the Railway Board will make the final call on the usage of this renewable energy — whether for traction power supply for Indian Railways or for commercial purposes.
Energy Supply and Distribution
The energy generated from this solar plant will be supplied to the Power Grid Corporation, and the same amount of energy can be availed by the Railways anywhere in the country from the regional grid, depending on the demand, the officials explained further.
Project Execution and Expectations
The project was entrusted to Sherisha Rooftop Solar SPV, a Chennai-based company, which will continue to operate the plant for over two decades post-completion. Railway officials are optimistic about the prospect of the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, inaugurating the project.
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