ABB India is partnering with Azure Power to provide solar inverters to 750 railway stations in north India to reduce dependence on traditional sources of energy, it has been revealed.
Indian Railways, which runs one of the largest railway networks in the world, carries more than 8bn passengers annually, with the 750 stations where inverters are to be installed located in the busy northern Indian part of the network, one of the most used railway corridors in the world.
The organisation recently reached a milestone of 5GW of solar inverters installed, supplying some 40% of India's solar power at approximately 13GW.
ABB solar inverters for this project will vary between 5kW to 50kW in performance depending on the size of the station, and will be part of the solar installations being set up by Azure Power.
ABB solar inverters have been widely used in the transportation sector, deployed, for instance, in the world's first fully solar powered airport in Kochi.
Tropical northern India is blessed with abundant sunlight with 300 sunny days, and solar power is a natural alternative to conventional electricity, much of which is generated using coal.
“We are privileged to partner with Azure Power to support the renewable energy drive of Indian Railways,” said Sanjeev Sharma, Managing Director, ABB India.
“ABB has been an integral technology partner for railways for decades, providing technology from turbochargers to substations. The scope and scale of this order is a tribute to ABB quality for such critical installations, used by millions. Providing the latest technology to drive energy revolution in sectors like transportation is a part of ABB's next level strategy," he added.
Indian Railways moves more than 12,500 trains and 23 million passengers daily, equivalent to the population of Australia. The company operates more than 8,000 stations across the country and is looking at building solar plants to supply clean power for their operations.
In the second stage the objective is a net zero energy concept wherein power is generated and consumed within the operations. As per reports, the Indian Railways has a current renewable energy generation capacity of 36 MW and plans to ramp it up to 1,000 MW.