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State's power grid set to get smart

Special Correspondent

Mescom trying out new technology, Bescom to soon follow suit


Real-time consumption by each consumer can

be tracked

Different tariff will be charged depending on the time when power is used


BANGALORE: A smart power grid, which the State is set to test soon, can help eliminate load-shedding with proper load management. Besides, it will allow dynamic power tariffs where consumers are charged different rates depending on the time when power is used.

Experts made technical presentations on the smart power grid system at a seminar on ‘Smart Grid' organised by the KEB Engineers' Association and Schneider Electric India here on Tuesday.

Rahul Tongia, principal research scientist in a not-for-profit scientific organisation, C-STEP, which is helping the Mangalore Electricity Supply Company (Mescom) carry out its smart grid pilot project, explained that it is possible to keep track of real-time consumption by each consumer.

When there is a shortage of power, it is possible to reduce supply to each house to manage the load without load-shedding. “Power can be supplied to five lights in the house instead of the total 10,” he said.

Similarly, instead of the present tariff system where a fixed price is charged for the total number of units consumed, the smart grid provides for a dynamic tariff system under which the monthly bill will be determined by factors such as whether power was used during peak or off-peak hours, he said.

Pilot project

Mescom is trying out the Smart Grid system on a pilot basis in Mangalore. The scheme covers about 250 installations, including industries, domestic connections and streetlights.

The project began three months ago. Streetlights are switched off automatically by means of a centralised control system in some areas where not much light is needed from 12 a.m. to 4 a.m. Consumption is reduced during the evening peak hours, instead of resorting to load-shedding when the demand shoots up, Mescom Managing Director Sumanth told The Hindu.

Bescom has decided to take up such a pilot project in Electronics City in Bangalore and a draft DPR has been prepared this. It may take some more time for the project to get under way, sources said.

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