Discom hopes that the overall situation will improve soon

Just two days after it announced re-imposition of power cuts, the Southern Power Distribution Company Limited (SPDCL) started receiving its full quota of 1,760 Mega Watts from Narla Tatarao Thermal Power Station (NTTPS) with one of its six 210 MW-units, which was shut for maintenance, resuming generation on Wednesday.

Except this piece of good news from the NTTPS, the SPDCL has nothing much to be happy about as one 500 MW unit of the 2,000 MW (4x500) - Simhadri Thermal Power Plant (STPP) at Visakhapatnam and another unit of same capacity at Kothagudem Thermal Power Station (KTPS) are non-functional and generation at other plants is below peak levels.

According to official sources, three 500 MW units of STPP are fully functional and the fourth one was shut down for overhauling, which requires 10 days for completion. The three working units were contributing 1,145 MW as on Wednesday evening. The STPP is partly affected by the strike by employees of Mahanadi Coalfields at Talcher in Odisha.

The KTPS is generating about 940 MW out of its installed capacity of 1,720 MW. The lone 500 MW unit there is under repair due to boiler leakage. The Kakatiya Thermal Power Plant at Bhupalapally in Warangal district is able to contribute only 400 MW out of its capacity of 500 MW. But, this is expected to be back in operation within a couple of days.

One unit of 210 MW of Rayalaseema Thermal Power Plant (RTPP) is also under repair. Generation from this plant stood at 715 MW out of its total capacity of 1,050 MW.

While the existing thermal power stations are generating below their ‘plant load factors’ for technical and logistical reasons, which include coal shortage, the SPDCL hopes that the overall situation will improve soon.

It is particularly upbeat with the bright prospect of an 800 MW unit of the AP Power Generation Corporation (APGENCO)’s new plant at Krishnapatnam coming on stream by the end of January. Its installed capacity is 1,600 MW (2x800 MW) which is planned to be upgraded in the due course.

Besides, the agriculture sector’s consumption of power is bound to come down in about two weeks helping in bridging the demand-supply gap to that extent. The overall situation is expected to be comfortable in these two to three months after which temperatures will start rising once again perking up the domestic demand.

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