The Andhra Pradesh Power Generation Corporation Limited (APGENCO) is geared up to make the new 800-Megawatt supercritical unit (Stage-II) of Sri Damodaram Sanjeevaiah Thermal Power Station (SDSTPS) at Krishnapatnam in Nellore district commercially operational by October 1 having conducted trial runs during which a maximum load of 268 Megawatts (MW) was achieved without any major problem.
There were turbine vibrations which the Boiler-Turbine-Generator (BTG) contractor (Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited) has rectified through realignment and recoupling of the rotors. The generation is being gradually scaled up towards the peak of 800 MW.
Stage-II is thus a few weeks away from being commissioned about six-and-a-half years after the foundation was laid for it and the Balance-of-Plant works were commenced by TATA Projects. BHEL had started erecting the boiler in June 2017 itself. Approximately ₹5,200 crore has been spent on this project so far.
SDSTPS is a project of Andhra Pradesh Power Development Company Limited (APPDCL) which is a joint venture of APGENCO and the DISCOMs. Stage-II (1X800 MW) of SDSTPS is one of the two major capacity additions undertaken by APGENCO, the other one being the 800-MW unit under construction at Dr. Narla Tatarao Thermal Power Station near Vijayawada.
Special Chief Secretary (energy) K. Vijayanand recently told The Hindu that the project would have been completed at least two years ago if there were no funding issues and labour shortage caused by the Coronavirus pandemic.
Some other teething problems were solved under the direct supervision of Mr. Vijayanand and APGENCO MD B. Sreedhar, who ensured that the new unit does not breach the deadline yet again.
SDSTPS Chief Engineer T. Nagaraju said APPDCL had signed an agreement with Mahanadi Coalfields Limited for supplying 3.548 million tonnes of coal per annum. Besides, the Andhra Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission permitted the DISCOMs to enter into a restated Power Purchase Agreement with APPDCL.
To control air pollution, a flue gas desulfurisation unit was planned to be established in the coming years to meet the norms laid down by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.
A senior engineer of SDSTPS says APGENCO is the first State power utility in the country to set up supercritical thermal plants which basically consume less fuel and thereby have low carbon emissions than subcritical ones. Their operating costs are also relatively less.