Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) has brought a turnaround in the hydro power sector by commissioning 6 hydro sets aggregating to 736 MW, accounting for 100 per cent of the hydro power capacity addition in the country during fiscal 2014-15. Notably, this is also the highest hydro capacity addition in a single year by BHEL in the last decade.
The feat was achieved by successfully commissioning projects of three major Central utilities - NTPC, NHPC and SJVNL. The projects commissioned by BHEL include 2 units (200 MW each) of Koldam Hydro Electric Project (HEP), with which NTPC has made its maiden entry in the hydro sector. In addition, a 130 MW unit of NHPC's Parbati III HEP and 3 units of SJVNL's Rampur (68.67 MW each) were commissioned. Significantly, the two units of NTPC's 4x200 MW Koldam HEP were commissioned on consecutive days. The surface power house comprises 4 Francis turbines of 200 MW rating each, operating under a head of 131.2 metres.
BHEL has the distinction of executing all the four hydro projects being presently developed by NTPC. Apart from Koldam, the other three hydro projects of NTPC, being executed by BHEL, are Tapovan Vishnugad HEP (4x130 MW), Lata Tapovan HEP (3x57 MW) and Rammam Stage-III HEP (3x40 MW). With the commissioning of the fourth unit of the 4x130 MW Parbati III HEP of NHPC, the 520 MW project has now become fully operational.
BHEL has a long standing association with NHPC beginning with setting up of NHPC's first hydro generating plant at Baira Siul (3x60 MW) in 1981. BHEL's contribution to NHPC's total generating capacity now stands at 1,884 MW. In addition, BHEL has commissioned the last three units of 68.67 MW each of Rampur HEP of SJVN Limited. The 412 MW Rampur HEP powerhouse comprising 6 units of 68.67 MW each, is designed to utilise the water that comes out after generation from Nathpa Jhakri HEP and is diverted to the intake of Rampur HEP through a tunnel. The power stations at Jhakri and Rampur are designed to be operated in tandem and the project does not require construction of a dam, reservoir capacity or additional land inundation. The project is equipped with 6 Francis turbines operating at a head of 119 metres.
The generation from these HEPs will contribute towards reduction of the greenhouse gas emissions and will help in achieving a low carbon development path for the state as well as the nation. BHEL has also booked orders for two major hydro projects viz. Tehri Hydro Development Corporation India Limited's 4x111 MW Vishnugad Pipalkoti HEP and NTPC's 3x40 MW Rammam HEP Stage-III, aggregating to 564 MW during 2014-15. BHEL has so far successfully commissioned around 400 Hydro generating sets of various rating in the country, with a cumulative capacity of more than 19,600 MW. BHEL is presently executing hydro power projects of around 4,600 MW, which are under various stages of implementation.