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Home News Power Sector News CSTEP, Infosys report on application of IT in Indian power sector released

CSTEP, Infosys report on application of IT in Indian power sector released

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IT Task Force was Report prepared under the chairmanship of Nandan Nilekani The Minister of State for Commerce and Power, Jairam Ramesh on 31-10-2008 released a report titled "Technology: Enabling the Transformation of Power Distribution in India" at Infosys Technologies Ltd (Infosys), Bangalore . The Ministry of Power had requested Centre for Study of Science, Technology and Policy, Bangalore (CSTEP) and Infosys to update the 2002 IT Task Force Report prepared under the chairmanship of Nandan Nilekani.

The report observes that India's power sector, in particular the distribution sector, must undergo a fundamental transformation to serve India's economic growth and societal needs. Power generation will need to grow four to five times from the current capacity to keep up with the desired economic growth.The report explores the impact of this magnitude and complexity of power requirement on the future design, operation and management of power distribution.

The report provides a technology trajectory for distribution, illustrated in three steps:

1. Advanced metering to reduce AT&C (Aggregate Technical and Commercial) losses that are at an unacceptably high-level presently
2. Automation to measure and control the flow of power to/from consumers on a near real-time basis
3. Moving to a smart grid to intelligently manage outages, load, congestion and shortfall

The report describes how each utility should develop its own technology adoption roadmap depending on its priorities and current business and technology maturity level. For this trajectory to be realized, interoperability among systems is critical, similar to the practice in mobile communications, banking and other networked industries. National level standards covering all these aspects have to be established to ensure the success of this transformation.

The report cautions that while technology is a powerful enabler, it is not a solution by itself; business-needs drive choice of technology and not the other way around. People (properly trained and equipped personnel) are the critical players for the successful management of any such system.

The Minister indicated that the Revised-Accelerated Power Development Reforms Programme (R-APDRP), which is being implemented at a cost of Rs. 50,000 crore, would make a provision for IT applications. This programme was being taken up mainly to reduce energy losses from the present level of 33 per cent to 15 per cent by the end of XI Plan.

Pointing out that the country has set an ambitious target of adding an additional 78,000 MW to the grid in the next five years, he said it would not be feasible to make such a huge addition without reducing the energy losses. IT could play a major role in such a situation, he noted.
The report is available for download at Infosys' and CSTEP's sites.

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