Four Southern States, second highest power consuming region in country: TANTRANSCO MD

Tamil Nadu's demand for power has increased more than three-fold in the past decade. From around 3,000 MW during 1990-91, it has exceeded 10,000 MW, according to R. Murugan, Managing Director of Tamil Nadu Transmission Corporation (TANTRANSCO).

While the highest unrestricted peak demand was between 11,000 and 11,600 MW, the highest peak demand met by the power authorities stood at 10,859 MW (July 19) with highest energy consumption being 237.95 million units (MU) on June 29.

The TANTRANSCO was the sister entity of Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO). The two firms were established in November 2010 following the unbundling of the erstwhile TNEB as mandated by Electricity Act, 2003. TANTRANSCO takes care of transmission of power from the generation to the distribution points.

Five regions

Delivering a lecture on ‘Power system development in Tamil Nadu' at the Institution of Engineers here on Thursday, he said that grid management was carried out on a regional basis with the country geographically divided in five: Northern, Eastern, Western, North-Eastern and Southern regions.

With 46,149.18 MW of installed capacity, the Southern Region, which comprised the four southern States besides Puducherry, was next only to the Western Region (53,342.57 MW), which included the heavily industrialised States of Maharashtra and Gujarat. The total installed capacity of the country was 1,70,228.86 MW.

Elaborating about power generation in Tamil Nadu, he said that 5,677 MW was produced by various power plants (such as hydro, thermal and gas) with Central Generating Stations contributing 2,861 MW and independent power plants pitching in another 1,180 MW. The gap between generation and demand in the State was bridged through power purchases, which was now ranging between 1,000 MW and 2,500 MW.

Wind power

At 6,142 MW, Tamil Nadu had the highest installed capacity of power generation windmills in the country. However, during the non-wind season, a deficit of 2000 MW to 4000 MW arises, which was managed by Restriction and Control Measures and Power Purchases.

Tracing the growth of the power sector in the State over the last 53 Years (From 1957), Mr. Murugan informed that the consumer base had grown from 4.3 lakh to about 212 lakh, per capita consumption from 21 units to 1,080 units, number of distribution transformers from 3,773 to 1.92 lakh, sustained peak demand from 172 MW to 10,859 MW and the number of electrified towns, villages and hamlets from 1,813 to 63,956.

The TANTRANSCO's network infrastructure included HT (high tension) and EHT (extra high tension) lines over a total length of 1.69 lakh kms and 1,309 substations. A total of 95 Substations in and around Chennai have been provided with hi-tech SCADA centres and have been integrated into Chennai Distribution and control centre (DCC).

A. Nachadalingam, Chief Engineer (Distribution) of Madurai Region, TANGEDCO, A. V. Dhanaraj, Chairman, Institution of Engineers (India), Madurai centre, P. Rajamani, secretary, K. Vijayakumar, joint secretary, took part in the function.