Smart Grid Pilots

Smart grid technology is constantly evolving, with scope for a wide range of operations. In 2013, the Ministry of Power (MoP) launched several smart grid pilot projects, to be implemented by various state-owned distribution utilities with its financial support. These projects were aimed at testing various functionalities, with advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) being the key amongst them. An update on the status of the various smart grid pilot projects that are currently being taken up…

MoP-approved pilot projects

Chamundeshwari Electricity Supply Corporation, Karnataka

Awarded in March 2014, the project covers 21,824 consumers of the VV Mohalla division in Mysuru. The total approved project cost is Rs 325.6 million, of which the central government’s contribution is Rs 162.8 million (Rs 81.4 million has already been released by the MoP). The expected payback period is five years. The project has adopted the AMI Residential (AMI-R), AMI-Industrial (AMI-I), outage management system (OMS), peak load management (PLM) and microgrid/distributed generation (DG) functionalities. The consultant for the project is Power Grid Corporation of India Limited (Powergrid). The letter of intent (LoI) for the project execution was issued to Enzen Global Solutions Private Limited. The complete project is expected to go live in May 2017.

A total of 22,850 smart meters are being deployed in the pilot project area, which covers about 10 per cent of the total consumers in Mysuru city. Apart from these, about 550 distribution transformers will be covered for health and power quality monitoring. As of January 2017, 18,000 single- phase smart meters, 333 data concentrator units (DCUs), 158 transformer monitoring units (TMUs), five fault passage indicators (FPIs) and 130 HT modems have been installed. Of these, 13,000 single phase meters and 80 modems are communicating to meter data management (MDM). Further, five remote terminal units (RTUs)/data loggers for supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) have been installed in the substations. Inspection of three-phase smart meters has been completed at the Chamundeshwari Electricity Supply Corporation lab. User acceptance testing (UAT) and the integration of applications are in progress.

Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam Limited, Haryana

The project, awarded in April 2014, covers 11,000 consumers of the Panipat subdivision. With a total approved cost of Rs 359.4 million, the project is being implemented with a grant from the Japanese government under the New Energy and Industry Technology Development Organisation by Fuji Electric Company. The project has adopted AMI-R, AMI-I, OMS and PLM functionalities. Engineering for control centre hardware and software and the site survey have been completed. While 10 smart meters have been delivered to the Haryana Power Training Institute (HPTI) for testing, SCADA and AMI have already been completed at HPTI. A purchase order has been placed by the discom to procure smart meters approved by the Bureau of Indian Standards. The expected date for project completion is June 2017.

Himachal Pradesh State Electricity Board, Himachal Pradesh

The project, awarded in February 2015, covers 1,554 consumers of the Kala Amb industrial area. Of the total approved cost of Rs 194.5 million, the central government’s contribution is Rs 97.3 million (Rs 24.3 million has already been released by the MoP). The project has adopted AMI-I, OMS, PLM and power quality (PQ) functionalities. Powergrid is the consultant for the project and the

Rs 249.9 million project execution contract, including maintenance charges of Rs 64.2 million, has been awarded to Alstom T&D India.

As of January 2017, 885 single phase and 180 three phase meters have been installed. Reports of single phase 10-60A and three phase current transformer-potential transformer (CTPT) feeder meters are awaited. Servers and networking at the control centre have been set up. Type testing of the distribution transformer monitoring unit (DTMU) and FPI has been completed. Relays installation, integration of meter data management with the existing billing system and approval of revised meter quantity are under progress. The expected project completion date is March 2017.

Assam Power Distribution Company Limited, Assam

The project, awarded in March 2015, covers 15,083 consumers of the Guwahati distribution region. Of the total evaluated project cost of Rs 209.2 million, the central government’s contribution is Rs 104.6 million (of which Rs 26.1 million has already been released by the MoP). The project has adopted AMI-R, AMI-I, OMS, PLM, PQ and DG functionalities. The consultant for the project is Medhaj Techno Concept Private Limited. The project execution contract has been awarded to Fluentgrid Limited (formerly Phoenix IT Solutions Limited) at a cost of Rs 298.6 million, inclusive of facility management services and training charges of Rs 14.7 million.

The factory acceptance test (FAT) of single-phase and three-phase meters and DCUs has been completed and despatch instructions have been issued. Prototype testing of three-phase low tension (LT) CTPT and high tension (HT) CTPT have been completed. Single phase (5-30A) and three phase (10-60A) net meters have not been submitted for prototype testing yet. The RF survey to prepare the communication backbone architecture has been completed by the smart grid implementing agency. The first lot of 500 single-phase and 6,453 three-phase meters has been received at the site. Draft regulations have been notified by the Assam Electricity Regulatory Commission. The expected project completion date is March 2017.

Punjab State Power Corporation Limited, Punjab

Awarded in March 2015, the project covers 2,737 consumers of the Tech-II subdivision of Sahibzada Ajit Singh Nagar. Of the total evaluated project cost of Rs 71.6 million, the central government’s contribution is Rs 35.8 million (Rs 8.95 million has already been released by the MoP). The project has adopted AMI-R, AMI-I and PLM functionalities. The consultant for the project is Powergrid, while the Rs 81.7 million project execution contract, including training and annual maintenance charges (AMC) of Rs 13.2 million, has been awarded to Kalkitech. The site survey has been completed. Data requirement sheets for smart meters, DCUs, control centre hardware and software, and design documents have been approved. Because the initial FAT of three phase meters failed, FAT for single- and three-phase meters will be redone by the end of February 2017. UPS and batteries have been installed at the control centre. March 2017 is the expected project completion date.

Tripura State Electricity Corporation Limited, Tripura

The project, awarded in September 2015, covers 45,290 consumers of Electrical Division I in Agartala. The total approved cost is Rs 634.3 million, of which the central government’s contribution is Rs 317.2 million (Rs 79.3 million has already been released by the MoP). The project has adopted AMI-R, AMI-I and PLM functionalities. Powergrid is the consultant for the project and Wipro Limited has been awarded the contract for its execution at a total cost of Rs 800.8 million, inclusive of training and maintenance charges of Rs 169.8 million. The site survey and type testing of meters has been completed. So far, 4,343 single-phase and 210 three-phase meters and 46 DCUs have been installed. The next lot of 4,908 smart meters and DCUs are under despatch. The control centre building is ready and its hardware and software have been installed. The expected project completion date is March 2017.

Telangana State Southern Power Distribution Company Limited, Telangana

The project, awarded in October 2015, covers the Jeedimetla industrial area, with 11,906 consumers. The total evaluated project cost is Rs 349.3 million, of which the central government’s contribution is Rs 144.7 million. The project has adopted AMI-R, AMI-I, PLM, OMS and PQ functionalities. The consultant for the project is the Central Power Research Institute and the LoI for its execution has been issued to Electronics Corporation of India Limited, Hyderabad, at a cost of Rs 358.6 million. The field survey has been completed and claims for the first installment of government funding have been forwarded. Proof of concept (PoC) has been taken up on a distribution transformer, and 20 single phase, six three phase and two CT meters have been installed for the PoC study. Draft regulations were submitted to the Telangana State Electricity Regulatory Commission in June 2016. The expected date for project completion is September 2017.

Puducherry Electricity Department, Puducherry

The project, awarded in May 2016, covers Division I of Puducherry with 34,000 consumers. Of the evaluated project cost of Rs 355.3 million, the central government’s contribution is Rs 177.6 million (Rs 44.4 million has already been released by the MoP). The project has adopted AMI-R and AMI-I functionalities. The consultant for the project is Powergrid and the Rs 439.1 million project execution contract has been awarded to Dongfang Electronics Company Limited. The field survey has been completed. Data requirement sheets (DRS) and functional design specification (FDS) documents have been submitted for approval and are under review. Sample meters have been submitted to the Electronics Regional Test Laboratory (ERTL) Kolkata for testing and certification. Draft regulations have been put up to the Joint Electricity Regulatory Commission. The expected date of project completion is November 2017.

Uttar Gujarat Vij Company Limited, Gujarat

The project covers the Naroda area of Sabarmati circle with 22,230 consumers. Of the total approved cost of Rs 827 million, the central government’s contribution is Rs 413.5 million. The project has adopted AMI-R, AMI-I, OMS, PQ and PLM functionalities. The project is still awaiting approval of the Monitoring Committee, along with a reduced approved cost, and covering only Naroda. The implementing agency for the project is yet to be awarded by the discom, the tender for which was floated in May 2016 and tenders were opened in December 2016. Price bids were opened at the end of January, and evaluation is currently under progress.

West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company, West Bengal

The project, awarded in June 2015, covers Siliguri town in Darjeeling district, with 5,265 consumers. The total approved cost is Rs 70.3 million, of which the central government’s contribution is Rs 35.2 million (Rs 8.79 million has already been released by the MoP). The project has adopted AMI-R, AMI-I and PLM functionalities. Powergrid is the consultant for the project, and the Rs 81 million project execution contract has been awarded to Chemtrols.

The field survey has been completed. DRS for smart meters and DCUs have been approved. Type testing reports of RF modules for smart meters are yet to be submitted. Revised DRS for control centre hardware and software are awaited. As per the MoP, the West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company had communicated the termination of its pilot project in Siliguri in November 2016. However, the smart grid project has been allowed to continue and will be resumed immediately after a few documents from Chemtrols are received. Besides these, smart grid pilot projects were also proposed to be taken up by Chhattisgarh State Power Distribution Company Limited, the Kerala State Electricity Board, Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited and Jaipur Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited, as per the 14 pilot projects initially identified by the MoP. These were, however, cancelled due to various reasons.

Other ongoing pilots

Ajmer Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited, Ajmer

The project, awarded in September 2015, covers 1,000 consumers in Ajmer. It was successfully completed and made operational with 1,000 installed smart meters (500 radius and 500 JnJ meters). Consumer indexing, back-end data integration and software application development have been completed.

Smart city pilot at IIT Kanpur

In addition to the pilot projects listed above, a smart city pilot project was also shortlisted by the MoP. The project will be executed at the IIT Kanpur campus in Uttar Pradesh. It aims to develop a smart city prototype and a research and development platform for smart distribution systems. Under this project, 20 houses have been identified for home automation. The total approved cost is Rs 125 million, of which the central government’s contribution is Rs 62.5 million (Rs 46.9 million has already been released by the MoP). The SCADA/energy management system component has been awarded to Synergy Signals and Systems and procurement has been initiated. The contract for the AMI/home automation components have been awarded to Mindteck India Limited. The contract for the photovoltaic (PV) components has been awarded to Elcomponics Limited. The installation of PV components and inverters is in progress.

Smart Grid Knowledge Centre at Manesar

Power Grid Corporation of India Limited is setting up a smart grid knowledge centre at Manesar in Haryana. The total approved cost for this project is Rs 98 million, which will be contributed wholly by the central government. The project has adopted AMI, OMS, microgrids/distributed generation, electric vehicles with charging infrastructure, home energy management system and cybersecurity solutions with threat management and training infrastructure functionalities. The building for the project is under construction. Contracts have been awarded for Home Energy Management System, workstations, and training room hardware. OMS has been awarded to Cyient and AMI has been awarded to Genus Power.

Conclusion

The benefits of implementing smart grid technology vary from country to country, based on various factors such as the level of economic and technological development. The implementation of these pilot projects gives a practical demonstration of the benefits as well as potential hurdles in harnessing this technology. The success of these projects will serve as a backbone to support the smart grid goals of the country and offer an optimal solution to meet India’s growing energy needs in a sustainable and affordable manner.

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