Solar Energy – JNNSM, Solar Cities, Solar Pumps, etc.

Ramagundam Floating Solar Power Plant

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Ramagundam Solar Plant

Mains level : Not Much

The country’s biggest floating solar power plant, by generation capacity at Ramagundam in Peddapalli district of Telangana is set to be commissioned by May-June.

Try this PYQ:

With reference to technologies for solar power production, consider the following statements :

  1. ‘Photovoltaics’ is a technology that generates electricity by direct conversion of light into electricity, while ‘Solar Thermal’ is a technology that utilizes the Sun’s rays to generate heat which is further used in electricity generation process.
  2. Photovoltaics generate Alternating Current (AC), while Solar Thermal generates Direct Current (DC).
  3. India has manufacturing base for Solar Thermal technology, but not for Photovoltaics.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1, 2 and 3

(d) None

Ramagundam Solar Plant

  • It would be one of the renewable (solar) energy plants being developed by NTPC with an installed capacity of 447MW in the Southern Region and the entire capacity would be commissioned by March 2023.
  • It will be spread over 450 acres of water surface area in the reservoir.
  • It will be the single location largest floating solar plant in the country as of now; 92 MW floating unit at Kayamkulam gas plant in Kerala and a 25 MW unit at Simhadri power plant.
  • In addition, we are setting up a 230 MW ground-mounted solar power plant in Ettayapuram near Tuticorin in Tamil Nadu

Why floating solar?

  • One of the biggest advantages of floating solar panels is that the installations do not require valuable land space.
  • Many of these installations can take up unused space on bodies of water, such as hydroelectric dam reservoirs, wastewater treatment ponds, or drinking water reservoirs.
  • Additionally, installing solar panels out on open water reduces the need for tree removal and forest clearing, a practice used in the case of some larger solar panel installations.
  • The bodies of water that host floating solar arrays help cool down the solar equipment, which means the panels produce electricity at higher efficiencies in hot climates than they might otherwise.
  • The floating solar panel structure shades the body of water and reduces evaporation from these ponds, reservoirs, and lakes.
  • This is a particularly useful benefit in areas susceptible to drought, as water loss to evaporation can add up over time and contribute to a shortage.
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