Gamesa offers to put up 3 power sub-stations in TN

M. Ramesh Chennai | Updated on July 28, 2011 Published on July 28, 2011


Gamesa, the Spanish wind power equipment major, which has operations in India, has made an offer to the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board to put up three 400 kV sub-stations at its own cost (Rs 200 crore each) – two in Tirunelveli district and one near Coimbatore. The discussions between Gamesa and the State electricity utility are currently on how Gamesa would be recompensed for its expenditure.

Speaking to Business Line today, the Chairman and Managing Director of Gamesa Wind Turbines Pvt Ltd (the Indian arm of the Spanish company) said that while the company preferred that its sub-stations be dedicated exclusively for its customers (those who put up wind farms with Gamesa's machines), the electricity board wants the infrastructure to be shared with others too.

“At the moment it is only a proposal,” Mr Kymal stressed, adding that if allowed, Gamesa would put up the sub-stations in 18 months. The offer underscores the critical shortage of evacuation infrastructure, which has resulted in a situation where the power-starved state not being able to run the windmills optimally.

Gamesa, which is just two years old in India, is seeing its business growing rapidly. Last year, it sold 200 machines (850 kW) and expects to sell 700 this year and 1,500 in the next. The company has chalked out a plan to expand its manufacturing capacity – it intends to put up blade and tower plants in Gujarat and a turbine plant near Chennai.

Tamil Nadu, already a leader in wind power with 6,300 MW of installed capacity (over 40 per cent of the country's) still has a huge scope to grow, Mr Kymal said.

(Industry leaders have pointed out that with improvements in technology, even low wind speed locations are now becoming viable.)

Mr Kymal pointed out that there was a huge scope for re-powering – replacing old machines with modern ones – which results in a substantial improvement in generation.

The urgent need therefore is for beefing up the evacuation infrastructure.

Published on July 28, 2011
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