German Chancellor Angela Merkel visits solar PV project sites supported by GIZ

German Chancellor, Dr. Angela Merkel was in Delhi for her two-day visit to India from October 31st to November 1st for the 5th round of Indo German consultations. During her trip, Dr. Merkel visited Dwarka Sector 21 metro station, which has a solar PV system of 500 kWp installed in 2014 with the technical support of GIZ – a first for the DMRC. GIZ advised the DMRC on the financing and planning of the photovoltaic system and supported DMRC in identifying suitable buildings for the installation of the solar modules. 

The success of the first pilot Solar Rooftop PV project for DMRC paved the way for further similar Solar PV rooftop installations across other DMRC stations in Delhi-NCR. Till October 2019, DMRC has installed cumulative capacity of 32.4 MWp solar rooftop PV spread over 14 metro train depots, 61 metro stations and 3 residential complexes of DMRC. All these installations have followed the business case of RESCO model wherein no capital investment has been made by DMRC. In this model DMRC makes the rooftop space available to a RESCO developer who is responsible for investment and maintenance of the solar rooftop and the economical benefit of the Solar PV power generated is shared between the DMRC and developer.

Dr. Merkel also visited a small standalone ‘PV Port and Store’, a ‘plug and play’ system designed to provide 24x7 power. Dr Winfried Damm, Director of Energy cluster in the Indo-German Energy Program explained the unique features of the PV Port to Dr. Merkel. 

The current PV port is a state-of-the-art design. It is a standardized plug & play, portable and easy to install 2 kWp solar PV system with electrical storage for residential consumers. Being modular in nature it can be installed within 3 hours and comes with an option of having an installed storage capacity of up to 4.8 kWh using either Lithium or Lead Acid batteries for providing backup. It comes with rotomoulded benches which are filled with water to act as deadweight and cool the electronics which are housed within them.  

In order to combat the harsh climate in India, the PV Port has cooled benches filled with water to keep the electronics inside at a low temperature, to provide ballast against high wind speeds but most important to provide water for a sprinkler system to remove the dust from the solar panels. Consumers will save on the hassle of applying for net-metering connections and enjoy annual savings of up to Rs. 20,000 (in Delhi) in electricity bills. The PV Port is designed to help in rapid and easy uptake of solar rooftop PV system among the people as well as help in grid balancing by making intelligent use of the storage. India has set an ambitious target of 40 GW of solar rooftop PV by 2022 with most installations taking place in developed urban areas.