Friday 15 February 2013

Author(s): Ankur Paliwal, Alok Gupta

An unviable route

An unviable route

Draft of national solar mission’s second phase fails to learn from past mistakes

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  • Excellent post. The solar

    Excellent post.
    The solar water pumping system uses solar energy to pump water.
    ÔÇó Solar PV panel
    ÔÇó One of the following motor-pump sets compatible with the photovoltaic array:
    ÔÇó surface mounted centrifugal pump set,
    ÔÇó submersible pump set,
    ÔÇó floating pump set,
    ÔÇó Submersible pump set,
    ÔÇó Any other type of motor-pump set, after approval from MNRE
    ÔÇó Pipes
    Working of a solar water pumping system
    The system operates on power generated using solar PV (photovoltaic) system. The photovoltaic array converts the solar energy into electricity, which is used for running the motor pump set. The pumping system draws water from the open well, bore well, stream, pond, canal etc.
    The system requires a shadow-free area for installation of the Solar Panel

    A system with 1800 watt PV array capacity and 2 HP pump can give a water discharge of 1.4 lakh litres per day from a depth of 6 to 7 meters. This quantity of water is considered adequate for irrigating about 5-8 acres of land holding for several crops.
    Approximate Cost
    Total cost of the system - Rs. 4,50,000/-
    GOI subsidy through MNRE - Rs. 1,80,000/-
    ÔÇó No fuel cost - as it uses available free sun light
    ÔÇó No electricity required
    ÔÇó Long operating life
    ÔÇó Highly reliable and durable
    ÔÇó Easy to operate and maintain

    The 3HP solar power surface pump would cost Rs 4.25 lakh while the 3HP submersible solar pump with a maximum 75-metre head would cost around Rs 4.85 lakh. "

    Earlier the same pump cost around Rs 5.70 lakh. However, prices have come down due to competition. Under the scheme farmers will get 86% subsidy on the cost of the pump, only having to pay the remaining 14%.
    Solar pumps sets are attached to the water source. The pump's solar panel converts the solar energy into electrical power, which runs the motor to pump water.

    Apart from small and Medium Farmers constraints even to meet the money after Government subsidy, the main drawback is reliability of the Solar Pumps. Solar Pumps work efficiently in the case of Open Wells.
    India has about 15 million grid-powered pump-sets and close to 7 million diesel-powered pumps. However, only about 7500 solar pumping systems have been installed for agricultural use in India.
    The problems with the grid-powered pumping systems are:
    ÔÇó Demand for electrical energy far outstrips supply, and the gap continues to widen
    ÔÇó It is proving increasingly difficult for the government to continue subsidizing the rising costs of generation, transmission and distribution losses, pilferage, etc (to deliver 3600 kWh to a farmer to pump water, 7000 kWh is required to be generated, assuming a diversity factor 2). The loss of revenue to the government is colossal.
    ÔÇó The costs and tariffs of electricity continue to rise ÔÇô the marginal farmer is unable to pay for the electricity)
    ÔÇó Grid power is unreliable and of poor quality, often leading to motor burnouts at the tail end.
    ÔÇó In a coal-fired thermal generating station, 1 kWh of electrical energy generated translates to 11.2 tonnes of carbon dioxide emission a year.
    The power tariff for Agriculture is free in some cases and minimal in other cases. Many of the Irrigation motors are outdated as such inefficient. A scheme can be chalked out by State Governments to replace the 4existing inefficient irrigation pump sets with modern ones by giving subsidy. This way enormous power can be saved. Electricity is a high grade energy which finds use in industry,lighting,computers etc.
    Dr.A.Jagadeesh Nellore(AP),India

    Posted by: Anonymous | 3 years ago | Reply
  • The introduction of solar

    The introduction of solar pumpsets for irrigation wells,tublewells and borewells is alternative energy to save farmer tosave climate and to increase farming .The cost of solar system 3hp 4.5 lakshs. The middle class farmers not come forward.The subsidy part only 30 percent. In Rajathan govt Horticulture dept have give 87percent subsidy. This very encouraging to farmers to go far solar.The same policy why not extend at national level. I request the lobbing with Finance Minister Govty of India and Energy Minister need urgently.In future Power shortage increases and irrigation decreases. production of food shortage willbe happend.Alternatively to promote this solar energy only to increse food production .vgreddy resident RRDS Nellore Andhra Pradesh,

    Posted by: Anonymous | 3 years ago | Reply
  • Solar systems are the great

    Solar systems are the great source of using one form of energy and converting it into another useful form. I would better love to use it for my home. Amazing post.

    Posted by: Anonymous | 3 years ago | Reply
  • Solar Powered Water Pump

    Solar Powered Water Pump system to lift water from 650 feet deep from th ground level to about 50 feet above the ground level. Required two sets.

    Posted by: Anonymous | one year ago | Reply
  • Solar pumps were a success in Rajasthan because the pumped water is used for dry crops. Also big storage tanks were built to pump the water to the tanks first as Solar insolation is intermittent.
    Since huge funds are available for solar pumps, in AP there is a big move which did not take off. Now in Nellore a new scheme to push solar Pumps:
    "A Newspaper report(Andhra Jyothi, Nellore Edition) says: 450 Farmers will be provided with Solar pumps. A solar pump costs Rs 4.95 lakhs and beneficiary has to meet Rs 55000. 17 Industries are approached to meet under CSR fund Rs 2.5 crores so that the beneficiary gets the solar pump free."
    Though this sounds laudable, anything given free in India don't work. Under National Demonstration Scheme the then Department of Non-Conventional Energy(DNES and now MNRE installed about 4000 water pumping w2indmills 80s. In Andhra Pradesh about 500 were installed. In our Fields Two were installed. These windmills were installed in RTC Bus stands, on the roadside etc. None of them worked and now ghosts. A good water pumping windmill costs about Rs 1 lakh and these windmills were manufactured in Polytechnics at a cost of Rs 20,000. In our fields they were blown away in a small gale. This is a classic example of indian mindset that anything given free, they never care to look after well.
    One more example. In the beginning simple box type solar cookers which used to cost Rs 650 were given a subsidy of Rs 150. Today there are 6 lakh Box Type solar cookers ever sold (but not all of them used). Why? There is no provision for frying in Box Type solar cooker, only boiling of rice, dhal etc. You can't have two cooking options one for boiling and another for frying. Moreover many don't like to cook in open. Assuming that educated women use it, the office going people will be away during sunshine. In Innovation theory there are two approaches: Technology Push and Demand Pull. Solar cookers belong to the former and mosquito mats/coils; mineral water etc. belongs to the latter. On the other hand there is bicycle which costs thrice that of a solar cooker and millions of them are in use and were never subsidised. In fact bicycle is the CLEANEST FORM OF TRANSPORTATION.
    As regards Solar pumps some pertinent issues:
    Though the promoters of solar pumps claim that they work for 8 hours, maximum pumping of water occurs between 11am and 2 pm. rest of the time small quantities. Solar insolation being intermittent,the water has to be pumped to a storage tank which has to be built at a higher elevation for gravity flow otherwise another system to pump water to the fields. Solar pumps are not reliable source for paddy as it is water intensive.
    In Andhra Pradesh NEDCAP is not suggesting who will meet the cost of the storage tank which is substantial?
    On the other hand for Rs 5 lakhs one can replace the inefficient electric motors about 17 motors with efficient ones(@Rs 30,000). By selling the old motor one can get Rs 2000 to 3000 and the Farmer can meet about Rs 3000. There are 13 lakh Electric pumpsets in AP. A saving of about 30 % of power possible. Electricity is a high grade energy which one needs for Industry, lighting etc. In AP per electric pump set the Farmer pays Rs 30 per month which is meager.
    By replacing the entire electric pumpsets with efficient ones, the Government can save thousands of MW of power. Energy saving is cheaper than energy generation as for new thermal projects, one needs to get number of clearances which takes years. As one American Cynic put it," You Indians guys are better than Bill Gates in Creating Windows".
    The protogonists of Solar pump say that solar power is free. At What cost? At what reliability? They site the power cuts of grid electricity. This is absurd. Both Electricity(conventional) and Non conventional(Solar) arte financed by Government and how they can cite the former as unreliable.
    In the name of Solar power and subsidies huge public funds are wasted. We need to spend public money judiciously and not as vote catching.
    Dr.A.Jagadeesh Nellore(AP)

    Posted by: Anumakonda Jagadeesh | one month ago | Reply
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