To lead the Indian Railways in introduction of fuel cells as a source of electric power for rolling stock and for standalone applications.
Solar Photovoltaic (SPV) Solar Cell is now a mature technology. Prices have plummeted due to economies of scale and entry of china in fabrication of SPV panels.
Government of India’s Policy
The Ministry of New and Renewable Energyis actively promoting use of solar energy, both in direct generation of power using SPV cells and in use of reflectors-concentrators for heating, cooking and steam generation. The twelfth and thirteenth five-year plans have indicated installation of 4000MW and 15000MW of solar power respectively. The Solar Mission of the Government of India lays down plans for ambitions grid connected solar power units.
Indian Railways - Status
Solar panels have been installed for years in standalone establishment such as remote LC gates, ACD installations and small stations.There has been virtually no application in rolling stock except one some narrow gauge coaches on the JAT-PTK and KLK-SML section.
Solar Photo Voltaic conversion is a mature technology and has been totally indigenized. The technology is now simple and easy to modularise. SPV units of standard capacities in ranges from 20 to 150 Watts are now available economically.
Standard SPV panels can be mounted atop a coach or a guard van to cater to train lighting load.SPV units must necessarily come with a battery backup with simple electronic control.
State of the Industry
Solar Photo Voltaic Cells have now become a commodity. Bulk production has brought down prices. India is a major producer of SPV panels.
The largest installation of SPV technology in India is in Khimsar, Rajasthan, where a 5MWp unit is satisfactorily working.
Indian Industry is fully capable of building SPV systems with associated battery backup and controls.
IROAF will lead the IR in introduction of Solar Energy on rolling stock for trainlighting and auxiliary power needs. SPV systems will also be used for augmenting lighting of fixed installations, such as workshops, factories and stations.