109 streetlights to become solar-powered

Solar power plans of the Madurai Kamaraj University (MKU) took off on Wednesday as it called for tenders from reputed companies to implement the project.

The university has embarked on a plan to install solar photovoltaic renewable energy system to be supplied to the administrative block, three blocks of the distance education wing, men’s and women’s hostels besides the main guest house.

Retrofitting/commissioning of 109 existing street lights in the university campus in to solar powered streetlights has also been covered in the tender. Expression of Interest (EOI) from reputed concerns in the field has to be submitted by January 2. “Installing of solar panels will result in huge saving of power for us. Once the sealed tenders are received, the next step of bidding process would be taken up. We have allocated nearly Rs. 3 crore for ‘Green Campus’ initiatives of which solar power plant is a top priority,” S. Kannan, Chairperson, School of Energy, Environment and Natural Resources, MKU, told The Hindu on Thursday.

The tender invite for solar photovoltaic plant says that the bidder shall provide turn-key design, supply, installation, testing, commissioning, maintenance and execution of warranty obligations of up to 100KW power grid and diesel generator-interactive solar power plant on the rooftops of university buildings.

Also, energy audit will have to be conducted in order to identify appropriate solar PV capacity to be installed for all the eight student hostels in order to power fans and minimum lighting needs.

The EOI must take in to account the peak load power usage of the buildings which occurs during day time in the administrative block and during night time in the hostels. Already, generators are available which could be used to complement the solar systems.

K. Pitchumani, Registrar in-charge, MKU, has said in the tender invite that the university intends to set up a total of up to 100KW solar energy system using on grid and/or off-grid systems. EOI was also invited for waster water treatment plant and a strategic planner for environmental planning and design for the campus.

Dr. Kannan has said that the solar power plans could take shape in three or four months. “We are focusing on all aspects such as rain water harvesting, water conservation and waste water treatment. Vice-Chancellor Kalyani Mathivanan is giving attention for a master plan that makes MKU in to a green campus,” he added.

More In: Madurai