Generation-based incentives (GBIs) are not an alternate to the depreciation benefits scheme and the revenue stream increase for investor by GBIs is only 3.5 per cent, Ramesh Kymal, CMD, Gamesa Wind Turbines, informs R Srinivasan.
In view of the massive wind energy potential in India, Gamesa plans to set up new blade manufacturing facilities for wind turbine components in Gujarat and Tamil Nadu. Ramesh Kymal, CMD, Gamesa Wind Turbines, spoke to us about certain facets of the industry like what measures India should adopt to achieve the target of 4,000 - 5,000 MW every year, what features the company's windmills should incorporate to make them more suited to Indian conditions since higher temperatures impact wind density, etc. Excerpts of the interview:
What measures should India adopt to achieve the 4,000 - 5,000 MW of wind power installations every year and what factors hinder the growth potential of wind energy?The expectation of 5,000 MW of wind power installation every year is achievable if wind power gets a remunerative price for the electricity sold and that is possible only if we have a a level-playing field vis-a-vis fossil fuels, which currently enjoy huge subsidies. In addition, uncertainty in feed-in tariffs, inadequate grid connectivity, high wheeling and open access charges in some states, delay in the acquisition of land and obtaining of statutory clearances are other factors that hinder the growth potential of wind energy.
What features do your windmills incorporate to make them more suited to Indian conditions since higher temperatures lower wind density? The wind turbine generators (WTGs) come with the option of working in high temperature climates, adaptability to the Indian grid with options like low voltage ride through (LVRT) active and reactive power control modules.
Kindly elaborate on what features make G97-2.0 MW turbines ideal for low wind sites?High flexibility due to a platform-based design approach, efficient cost of energy (CoE) because of high swept area per KW of the rated power and new blades with optimised profiles make them ideal for low wind sites.
What features do the windmills incorporate to prevent bird hits?The machines don't have any provision to prevent bird hits but there is an option of undertaking migratory bird path studies before selection of each wind farm site.
Kindly elaborate how speed control and variable pitch in the G5X- 850 kW allow it to achieve maximum energy with maximum efficiency?Variable speed WTGs can vary their speed to the maximum efficiency curve at a given wind speed, thereby increasing the WTG's efficiency. Unlike their fixed speed counterparts that can only have one maximum efficiency point, the G5X-850 kW WTG can track the maximum efficiency curve over a range of wind speeds. Variable pitch helps optimise the angle of attack for the blades, thus giving a little improvement in the power capture during the start-up period of a WTG.
In 2009, the company sold 200 turbines of 850 kW and in 2010, it had planned for 650. What is the target for this year?In 2009, we sold 17 turbines (October – December). For 2010, our company sold over 400 turbines of 850 kW. For 2011, the company plans to sell more than 650 turbines of the same capacity. In addition, we plan to introduce the G97 2 MW turbine to the Indian market this year.
To what extent have generation-based incentives, renewable energy certificates (RECs) and renewable purchase obligations (RPOs) served the purpose? Generation-based incentives (GBIs) have not served their purpose as it is not an alternate to the depreciation benefits scheme. In addition, the revenue stream increase for the investor by GBIs is only 3.5 per cent. Though the REC framework allows utilities with RPO's to buy certificates irrespective of state potential and installed capacity, inadequate price levels (floor price and forbearance price) and relaxation of compliance targets along with the enforcement mechanisms may hamper progress.
As per news reports, wind turbine manufacturer Gamesa plans to start three new plants in India by 2012 and increase its capacity in India from 500 MW to 1,000 MW. In 2009 the company sold 200 turbines of 850 kW and in 2010 it had planned for 650 turbines. The company now plans to introduce the G97 2 MW turbine to the India market this year. Gamesa Wind Corporation, the Indian subsidiary, has set up a facility at Red Hills in Chennai to produce G 58850 KW wind turbines that are suited for Indian grid and wind conditions.
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