What is seen as Torrent Power Limited’s foray into energy storage solutions, the private sector power major on Tuesday said it will set up three pumped-storage hydro (PSH) projects having 5,700 megawatt (Mw) capacity in Maharashtra with a combined investment of ₹27,000 crore.

The project would generate employment for 13,500 people during the construction period and is expected to be completed over the next five years.

The projects would be executed at three sites identified by Torrent. These are namely Karjat (3,000 Mw) in Raigarh District; Maval, (1,200 Mw) and Junnar (1,500 Mw) both in Pune District. All the sites are off-stream and the projects are planned to provide a minimum of six hours of energy storage daily.

The share of renewable power, which is intermittent, is rapidly increasing in the grid. This necessitates energy storage for load management and meeting peak demand, a company statement said.

Company stats

Torrent Power currently has an aggregate installed generation capacity of about 4.1 Gw, which consists largely of clean generation sources such as gas (2.7 Gw) and renewables (1.07 Gw). The company has renewable capacity of 0.7 Gw under development.

The company continues to focus on renewables for growth in the power generation space. To complement its growing portfolio of renewables and distribution, Torrent is strategically entering the storage space to fulfil the void left in the grid by intermittent renewable power, an official statement said.

Torrent Power shares ended at ₹610.10 on BSE after gaining 3.65 per cent on Tuesday.

How PSH project works?

Pumped Storage Hydro is an established, proven, and cost-effective technology for firm, flexible, and dispatchable power. PSH is a configuration of two water reservoirs at different elevations.

Water is pumped to the upper reservoir at the time of excess power when it is the cheapest. At the time of demand when power is expensive, water flow from the upper reservoir to the lower reservoir generates power with a hydraulic turbine.

PSH is a much superior solution than a battery for energy storage as it is cheaper, has a longer life of 40 years, and provides longer duration storage of 6 to 10 hours with the feasibility of multiple cycle operations during the day.