GUWAHATI, June 9 - The Maligaon-headquartered Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) has been able to harness 2,300 kilowatts peak (kWp) of solar energy during the last financial year.
“We have deployed an aggressive policy for greater use of solar energy in place of conventional energy. As part of the initiative, we have been able to harness 2,300 kWp of solar energy during the 2018-19 fiscal. In the process, a sum of Rs 1.88 crore has been saved by the zone,” said Pranav Jyoti Sharma, Chief Public Relations Officer (CPRO) of the NFR.
He added: “While Guwahati has already become the first fully solar-powered station under the NFR, off-grid solar plants are being installed in 41 other stations all over the zone totalling to a capacity of 1,140 kWp. Out of these 41 stations, work has already been completed at Barahu, Sonuabari and Amoni stations under the Lumding division, while the plants in the remaining stations are to be commissioned by December 2019.”
Sharma said that an annual saving of Rs 37.38 lakh is expected to be generated once these plants are commissioned.
“Another 730 kWp of solar projects are also awaiting commissioning, which include the Rail Museum at Alipurduar Junction (40 kWp), the RPF barracks at Alipurduar (300 kWp), the Coaching Department in Guwahati (200 kWp), to be commissioned by December this year. These solar plants, which are of the grid-connected variety, will yield an annual saving of about Rs 60 lakh,” he said.
The NFR has also targeted installation of another 2,935 kWp in the near future for which finalisation of terms of reference is in process.
“This will include a plant of 1,000 kWp capacity in the Mechanical Workshop at Bongaigaon, as well as other facilities in the Dibrugarh station, Kamakhya station and the Diesel shed at New Guwahati. All these plants have been set up free of cost under the Power Purchase Scheme, where Railway will have to buy the solar power from the agency at rates fixed for a period of 25 years. The NFR has already installed solar power in most of its level crossing gates all over the zone,” said the NFR CPRO.