Taking a giant leap towards clean energy, the Madhya Pradesh government will today (4 August) sign a contract for the first phase of the world's largest Omkareshwar Floating Solar Project. In the first phase of the 600 MW project, contracts of 278 MW capacities will be signed.
Rewa Ultra Mega Solar Limited (RUMSL) has issued letters of award to three companies — NHDC Ltd, AMP Energy, and SJVN Ltd — to develop a total capacity of 278 MW in the first phase. NHDC Ltd will develop 88 MW in Unit-D, AMP Energy will develop 100 MW in Unit-E, and SJVN Ltd will develop 90 MW in Unit-F of the project.
Omkareshwar Floating Solar Project
The Omkareshwar Floating Solar Project was first proposed in 2019 and was later planned to be expanded into a 600 MW floating solar project.
The floating solar project is being constructed in two phases on the reservoir formed by the Omkareshwar dam across the Narmada River in Khandwa district of Madhya Pradesh. Said to be the world's largest floating solar plant, the project is expected to attract investment of about Rs 3,500 crore in the state.
The 600 MW capacity project comprises of six units of 100 MW of floating solar photovoltaic grid-connected power projects which will be developed at predetermined sites at Omkareshwar reservoir. The evacuation infrastructure for the projects will be provided by RUMSL.
Omkareshwar project is a multi-purpose project in which irrigation and hydroelectricity generation are already taking place. The Omkareshwar reservoir is with the Narmada Hydroelectric Development Corporation (NHDC). RUMSL has identified sites for the development of 600 MW project on the reservoir and leased space for the development of this Floating Solar Park from NHDC.
"Omkareshwar Dam is built on the Narmada River. This is our hydel project and in this, we produce energy from water, but it is spread over about 100 square kilometres, there is a very large water body where the water level remains normal," Renewable Energy Department Principal Secretary Sanjay Dubey told ANI. Dubey also said that the change in water level in the area was nominal and it thus serves as a suitable site.
With the new floating solar plant, Khandwa will become the only district in Madhya Pradesh to have thermal power station, hydel and solar power. “Khandwa will become the only district in the state to have all three things including solar, hydel and thermal with over 4,000 MW power to be produced from a single district," said Dubey.
Low Prices Discovered
In the first phase, RUMSL floated tenders in November 2021 to develop a 300 MW floating solar project in Omkareshwar on a BOOT (Build-Own -Operate-Transfer) basis.
Tariff-Based Competitive Bidding (TBCB) method was used for selection of successful bidders. With 15 bidders shortlisted to participate in the bidding process, the tender received an overwhelming response.
Each of AMP Energy, NHDC and SJVN won contracts for development of 100 MW. While AMP Energy quoted a tariff of Rs 3.21 per KWh, NHDC won with a quoted tariff of Rs 3.22 per KWh, while SJVN won the contract for the remaining 100 MW capacity at a quoted tariff of Rs 3.26 per kWh.
The first-phase capacity development is expected to be completed by September next year. The auction for the remaining 300 MW will take place soon.
For SJVN, this is the largest floating solar project bagged through tariff-based competitive bidding process. The firm has pegged the tentative cost of the project for itself at Rs 585 crore.
RUMSL was formed in 2015 as a joint venture company of Madhya Pradesh Urja Vikas Nigam Limited (MPUVN), and Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI).
RUMSL has been designated as Solar Power Park Developer (SPPD) by Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) to develop large-scale solar parks in Madhya Pradesh. RUMSL is developing solar parks under MNRE’s Ultra Mega Renewable Energy Power Projects (UMREPP) scheme.
The company has developed 750 MW Rewa Solar Project and 250 MW Mandsaur Solar Park. 750 MW Rewa Solar Project which is amongst the most significant solar projects in the world, was fully commissioned on 3 January 2020. It has since been supplying affordable and clean electricity to Madhya Pradesh Power Management Company (MPPMCL), the state-owned DISCOM , and Delhi Metro Corporation Limited (DMRC).
RUMSL is now developing 1500 MW Solar Parks in Agar-Shajapur- Neemuch districts in the Northwest region of Madhya Pradesh. The 1500 MW solar parks include 550 MW Park in Agar district, 450 MW Park in Shajapur district and 500 MW Park in Neemuch district. The project is likely to be completed by September 2022 and power from this park will be supplied via the national grid to Indian Railways in eight states and Madhya Pradesh Power Management Company (MPPMCL).
The other upcoming projects of RUMSL are 950 MW storage based hybrid park in Chhatarpur and 1400 MW Morena Solar Park. Both these projects are currently under evaluation stage.
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