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More Solar Power For Bangalore Metro Trains By March 2023

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Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation (BMRCL) is all set to put in more solar panels in all Metro stations that come under phase 2 planning by March 2023 to equip its trains with much-needed solar power.

Currently, five stations already have solar panels installed- Vajarahalli, Konanakunte Cross, Talaghattapura, Doddakallasandra, and Silk Institute on Kanakapura Road Metro corridor.

Metro phase 1 got operational without harnessing solar energy. “ We are planning to set up panels in all stations across Metro corridors,” said BMRCL chief PRO BL Yashwanth Chavan.

Solar energy can play a crucial part in cutting down the power bills in Metro. “The current monthly power requirement for the third rail alone is around 65 lakh units (kWh) for the 56km operational network. The estimated monthly requirement will be 205 lakh units once phase 2, 2A, and 2B (175 km) are completed,” said Chavan. He further added that the power spending for third-rail alone is Rs 3.9 crore per month. As per him, currently, solar panels are helping BMRCL to generate 1.8 lakh units and save Rs 10.8 lakh a month.

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Metro works on a third-rail concept that is imperative for providing traction power to trains. According to a Metro official, a major chunk of power goes to accommodate third-rail and auxiliary needs- escalators, AC at stations, lighting, etc. Solar energy can help in bearing the load.

“BMRCL’s monthly electricity bill now is around Rs 5.8 crore. The estimated bill after commissioning of phases 2, 2A and 2B will be around 19 crores. Estimated monthly solar power generation will be 28.5 lakh units by 2023 (excluding phases 2A and 2B). This will reduce our bills by around Rs 1.7 crore by March 2023”, added Chavan.

As per a Metro official, all stations are naturally-lit and also have LED-based lights and we are planning to install platform screen doors (PSDs) for its underground stations (14 km Dairy Circle-Nagawara) in phase 2. It will minimize the AC load from 900T to 400T at every station on this route.

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