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128 railway stations under SWR harness solar power

The South Western Railway generated 4.4 million units of power harnessing solar energy last fiscal that resulted in saving ₹1.78 crore in electricity charges.

The emphasis on harnessing solar power has led to installation of rooftop solar plants at 128 railway stations across the zone over the last few years.

The thrust on solar power is part of the Indian Railways plan to source about 1,000 mega watt (MW) of solar power and about 200 MW of wind power progressively by 2021-22 across all zonal railways and production units.

A release said out of the proposed 1,000 MW, 500 MW will be harnessed through solar plants which are being installed on the rooftop of railway buildings and will be used to meet non-traction loads and other operations at railway stations. Another 500 MW harnessed from land-based solar plants will be used to meet both traction and non-traction requirements, according to the officials.

The South Western Zone has provided rooftop solar solutions at 128 railway stations, including Hubballi, KSR Bengaluru, Mysuru, Yeshwantpur, Hospet, Gadag and Ballari. It has also covered seven service buildings such as Rail Soudha ‘West & Central Wing’, Divisional Railway Manager’s Office at Hubballi, Railway Hospital at Hubballi, Divisional Railway Manager’s Office at Bengaluru, Parcel Office and Railway Hospital at Bengaluru, and at the Divisional Railway Manager’s Office at Mysuru.

The workshops and sheds have also been provided with solar rooftop plants and in addition 221 level crossings are operating on electricity provided by solar photo voltaic cell lights. “The solar electricity generation last year was 4.4 million units, which is expected to increase to the tune of 4.664 million units this year subject to sunny days and insulation,” said the release.

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