Daily News Wrap-Up: SECI’s Auction for 2 GW ISTS-connected Solar Projects

India's Solar Park Initiative gains momentum with 10,237 MW installed to date.

July 24, 2023


SAEL, ReNew Power, Eden Renewables, Jakson, Shiva Corporation, and Avaada Energy won Solar Energy Corporation of India‘s auction to set up 2 GW interstate transmission system-connected solar projects (Tranche XI) in India. SAEL and ReNew Power bagged 600 MW each, quoting ₹2.60 (~$0.032)/kWh. Eden won 300 MW by quoting ₹2.60 (~$0.032)/kWh, and Jakson secured 200 MW by quoting ₹2.60 (~$0.032)/kWh. Shiva Corporation quoted ₹2.60 (~$0.032)/kWh for 100 MW. Avaada was the only bidder to quote ₹2.61 (~$0.032)/kWh and bagged 200 MW out of the quoted capacity of 500 MW.

The Indian Government has to date, approved 50 solar parks across 12 states with a combined capacity of 37,990 MW. Of the approved parks, 11, with a total 8,521 MW project capacity, are fully commissioned, and seven solar parks of 3,985 MW are partially commissioned. The Union Minister of New Renewable Energy & Power, R.K. Singh, gave the information in a written response in the Lok Sabha. Under the Development of Solar Parks and Ultra Mega Power Projects program, the government has installed 10,237 MW capacity.

North Central Railways has invited bids for state-wise empanelment of agencies to implement grid-connected rooftop solar power projects of 5.525 MW capacity at its various divisions and workshops through public-private partnership and on a design, build, finance, operate, and transfer basis. The projects must be commissioned within 240 days of receiving the work order. The developers must also provide comprehensive operation and maintenance services for 25 years. The last day to submit the bids is August 4, 2023. The bids will be opened on the same day.

The Agency for New & Renewable Energy Research and Technology invited bids from empaneled vendors for installing and commissioning 1.24 MW of grid-connected rooftop solar power projects at 11 public institutions in Thiruvananthapuram under the Solar City project. The last date to submit the bids is July 31, 2023. Bids will be opened the following day. The supplier should provide ten years warranty for the system and components or part of the system to be used for the projects as per the special conditions of the contract.

The Ministry of Power approved a plea from ReNew Dinkar Urja, a special-purpose vehicle of ReNew Power, to set up overhead transmission lines for its 200 MW solar power project in Bikaner, Rajasthan. The approval for the overhead lines has been granted for 25 years. ReNew will have to seek the consent of the concerned authorities, i.e., local bodies, railways, national highways, and state highways, before the erection of proposed lines. The company must follow the regulations and codes of the appropriate commission regarding transmission, operation & maintenance, and open access framed under the Electricity Act, 2003.

Higher retail tariffs in Maharashtra have spurred commercial and industrial consumers to opt for solar open access, helping them save up to 40% on electricity bills annually. According to Mercom India’s Q1 2023 Mercom India Solar Open Access Market Report, as of March 2023, the state had the country’s second-largest cumulative installed solar open access capacity of 1,037 MW, accounting for 12.5% of the total capacity. During the first quarter of 2023, the state added 70 MW of solar open access capacity, up 6% quarter-over-quarter compared to about 66 MW in Q4 2022.

The Department of Energy, Philippines, through its Green Energy Auction-Bids Evaluation and Awards Committee, has announced the list of successful bidders under the second round of the Green Energy Auction Program, awarding a total of 3.43 GW of solar and wind projects. A total of 42 bidders were declared successful after the latest round of bidding for projects that will be developed at 105 different sites in the country’s Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao regions. The allotted capacity will be installed over the next three years, from 2024 to 2026.

ACME Group, a renewable energy company, has achieved the financial closure of ₹40 billion (~$488 million) loan from REC Limited, which will be used to kick-start the first phase of the company’s green hydrogen and green ammonia project to be developed in the Special Economic Zone of Duqm, Oman. The project’s first phase is expected to produce 100,000 tons of green ammonia annually. The facility’s capacity is projected to expand to 1.2 million tons annually, with approximately 3.5 GW of electrolyzer capacity.

Australia reached 30 GW of installed solar capacity at the end of 2022, according to a recently released report by Australian Photovoltaics Institute (APVI). In 2022, commercial and industrial rooftop solar (1.47 GW) surpassed residential installations (1.35 GW) for the first time. Despite these additions and with one of the highest per-capita installed solar capacities globally, the APVI report notes a 23% decline in new residential rooftop installations and a 20% decline in utility-scale installations since 2021.

Bhopal Smart City Development Corporation has invited bids to set up two electric vehicle (EV) charging stations with five charging points per station under a public-private partnership model. The successful bidder will also operate and maintain charging stations for ten years. The selected vendor will be responsible for designing, supplying, installing, and maintaining the EV charging stations at the identified locations in Bhopal City.

An international team of researchers, led by the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in Switzerland, have developed a perovskite solar cell that features a 2D/3D heterojunction architecture with a power conversion efficiency of 25.32% (certified 25.04%) under standard illumination. The research, published in Advanced Materials, tested the perovskite solar cell for its stability after 2,000 hours of operation and observed that the cell retained a remarkable 90% of its initial efficiency.