>Alternate Energy

The Power of Solar

The power of Thinking Big seems to have been perfected by Mahindra Susten. If any proof were needed, then take a look at Rewa Ultra Mega Solar Ltd ((RUMSL), as the best example of this thinking at work. The 750MW Rewa power plant, inaugurated by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi in September 2019, has the distinction of being Asia’s largest solar power project.

Spread over 1,500 hectares in Gurh tehsil of Rewa district in Madhya Pradesh, the plant is divided into 3 units of 250MW each.

Mahindra Renewables Private Ltd has been allotted one 250MW unit through tariff based competitive bidding conducted by RUMSL. RUMSL, a joint venture between the Madhya Pradesh Urja Vikash Nigam Ltd and the Solar Energy Corporation of India, is the implementing agency of the Solar Park. Mahindra Susten was one of three companies that won the project in the reverse auction by bidding one of the lowest tariffs.

In addition to the green power generated, the Rewa solar park project is also expected to reduce carbon emissions equivalent to about 15 lakh tons of carbon dioxide per year. However, numerous challenges had to be overcome before the project could be operationalized. The DevCo team of Mahindra Susten’s engineering team led by the Mahindra Rise principle of Accepting No Limits worked around the challenges to complete the project.

The hard strata of the land made digging trenches to lay cables a difficult task. The DevCo team devised a new innovative method for cable laying. The all-terrain cable tray makes use of the vertical posts erected for the module mounting structure. This is the first-ever solar photovoltaic project in which this innovative cable laying method has been utilized.

There were other challenges too - power evacuation, de-monetization and the introduction of GST which affected switchyard readiness. The Mahindra Susten unit was the first to achieve initial part commissioning.

The Rewa project is one of Mahindra Susten’s largest ones implemented so far, and also the most complex considering the size, land strata, involvement of multiple off-takers and states. The Operation and Maintenance of the project is done by Mahindra Teqo, which helped the team secure similar contracts for two other projects in the Rewa solar park. The entire 750MW capacity of the park is being managed by the Mahindra Teqo team.

Riding on the experience and learning of the Rewa project, the DevCo team have now secured three more projects –two ISTS connected projects of 250MW each, and one State project of 200MW, taking its total portfolio to ~1650MWp.

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