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Smartgrid to put India’s power network on par with China

According to reports, In a significant step towards scaling up the stability of the Indian electricity grid, a decision on rolling out a Rs 239 crore proposal to deploy smart grid devices across the country’s entire power transmission network is to be taken up on Monday.

In the run-up to the proposed integration, all five regional electricity grids in the country by the year 2014, the incorporation of the new smart grid devices will put India’s electricity grid on par with China’s wide area monitoring systems placed across its six grids. The new installations would also help in ensuring grid stability at a time when the share of renewable power, especially from sources such as wind and solar that are inherently unreliable in terms when the units will inject power into the grid, is expected to increase in the years to come.

A joint meeting of all the regional standing committees on Power System Planning, chaired by the Central Electricity Authority’s Member-Power Systems, is slated for March 5. Approvals for deploying a unified real time dynamic state measurement mechanism, involving the placement of 1,186 phaser monitoring units (or PMUs, which if diversely placed throughout the electricity grid at strategic locations would enable real-time monitoring of the systems from a central location) by 2014-15 at an estimated cost of Rs 170 crore and another 483 PMUs entailing an additional Rs 69 crore, is likely to come through after Monday’s meeting. Currently, China has installed more than 1,000 PMUs in their grid and by the end of this year, it plans to have these units at all 500kV substations and all power plants of 300 MW and above.

In India, at present, the north, west and eastern regions are integrally connected through strong transmission links to form what is called the NEW grid. In about a couple of years, the southern region is to be completely integrated with the NEW grid to form one of the largest synchronous interconnections in the world.

The move to upgrade the grid monitoring systems, coming in the wake of increasing complexities involved in monitoring and control of a large integrated grid as envisaged in the Indian context, is expected to go a long way in carrying out security assessment on a real-time basis and responding to contingencies for maintaining reliable and stable grid operations in the future, officials involved in the exercise said.

China has installed more than 1,000 PMUs in their grid and by this yearend, it plans to have these units at all 500kV substations and all plants of 300 MW and above.

In India, north, east and west regions are integrally connected via transmission links called NEW grid. Soon the southern region will be integrated with the NEW grid to form one of the largest synchronous interconnections in the world.

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