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Outages back in Tamil Nadu as wind plays hide and seek

According to reports, after a brief lull in electricity outages due to high output by windmills, Tamil Nadu Electricity Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) has been forced to revert to unscheduled power cuts of around 10 hours due to dip in wind power generation and outages in units of three power stations, including Madras Atomic Power Station.

Officials on Tuesday said that the additional shortage of 1,000 MW combined with a lingering 3,000 MW shortage led to TANGEDCO reintroduce 10-hour-power cuts in all parts of the State barring Chennai.

According to its official website, TANGEDCO on Tuesday morning received only 383 MW from wind mills in the State though the installed capacity is 7,130MW. This ratio increased gradually increased to 1500 MW by late evening.

With favourable conditions witnessed in May, the wind mills were producing around 3,000 MW power daily and TANGEDCO eased power cuts to around four-hours. However, for the past one week, generation levels of wind mills fell to 350 MW, forcing TANGEDCO to impose additional power-cut, officials said.

“Owing to variable weather, the wind level is varying minute by minute, forcing imposition of unscheduled cuts,” an official with Load Dispatch Centre of TANGEDCO said.

On Tuesday, TANGEDCO received 2,739 MW from central power stations against the allocated 3,519 MW. Officials said that the decreased share was owing to three units of power stations experiencing outages. The officials said that one 500 MW unit of Talcher (stage II), which gives 477 MW to Tamil Nadu, the second 220 MW unit of the Madras Atomic power station (MAPS) and the first 210 MW unit from the North Chennai Power Station were also experiencing outages. An official said that Talcher unit was closed due to shortage in coal supplies.

“A fire in the generator transformer of MAPS has led to its being shut down for the past two months and the North Chennai unit has been temporarily closed due to a hydrogen gas leak,” the official added. “As per schedule, the second unit of MAPS has to be opened by June 15. But North Chennai and Talcher Stage II units will start generation on Wednesday,” an officer said.

On Tuesday, the State managed to meet around 11,500 MW of its demand by using 1,200 MW power generated from the newly constructed units at Mettur and North Chennai Thermal Power Plants, which are on trial run, the official added.

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