Hyderabad: South Central Railway, which has taken the lead to usher in ‘energy neutral’ railway stations that are capable of meeting 100 per cent energy requirements by tapping into natural solar power, has converted 13 stations into energy neutral ones, the highest among all railway zones in the country. The energy neutral railway stations meet their energy requirements from Solar Photo Voltaic (SPV) panels commissioned on their buildings.
In addition, one service building ie, Railway Health Unit at Parli Vaijnath under the Secunderabad Division in Maharashtra has also been made energy neutral, the SCR said.
The one of its kind successful innovation on Indian Railways has earned immense appreciation from all quarters, particularly agencies and individuals involved in environmental protection issues. The energy neutral stations concept is based on the principle of developing railway station buildings with total solar power tapping capabilities commensurate to exact load requirements of those particular stations. This is done by installation of SPV panels on the roof tops which are integrated with the on-grid (or) off-grid solar energy plants to derive power supply to the entire station.
The total capacity of solar panels installed at the 13 energy neutral stations is 99 kWp with the cost incurred being around Rs 50 lakh. With anticipated energy generation from these stations coming to around 1.3 lakh units annually, it is expected that solar power will also lead to savings of Rs 13 lakh each year. In addition, the generation of clean solar energy enables reducing carbon footprints to the tune of 1,170 tons per annum.
All the power needs of the these stations including lighting, fans, pumps and other electrical appliances are met through the solar energy generated, thereby bringing down the net traditional energy consumption at these stations to zero, SCR officials said, adding that SCR General Manager Gajanan Mallya was chalking out various innovations, seeking all departments to act in tandem and serve the larger aim of harnessing various avenues of green energy.
In its push towards green energy sourcing for railway and significantly reducing carbon footprints, SCR has so far commissioned 8.2MWp solar power plants, 1.75 KWp Solar Hybrid plants, 2.18 lakhs LPD solar water heating, 570 kWp water pumping and 52 KW equivalent day pipe light system in offices. SCR is in the process of bringing more stations under the energy neutral umbrella at the earliest to make them eco-friendly.
What’s energy neutral concept?
The energy neutral stations concept is based on the principle of developing railway station buildings with total solar power tapping capabilities commensurate to exact load requirements of those particular stations. These stations meet their energy requirements from Solar Photo Voltaic panels commissioned on their buildings