National lignite data centre inaugurated

Special Correspondent

Union Ministry of Coal funded the Rs. 7.50-crore venture set up at NLC

NEYVELI: Neyveli Lignite Corporation (NLC) has assumed a pivotal role in the creation of database on lignite deposits, exploration and exploitation across the country.

This has been made possible with the setting up of an Integrated Lignite Resource Information System (ILRIS) data centre in the NLC, funded by Union Ministry of Coal to the tune of Rs. 7.50 crore.

NLC Chairman S. Jayaraman inaugurated the centre on Saturday in the presence of V.V. Rao, Deputy Director General, Coal, and P.R. Mandal, Advisor, Projects, Union Ministry of Coal. Mr. Jayaraman thanked the Coal Ministry for having sanctioned the project to the NLC. Mr. Mandal appreciated the NLC for having completed the work on the data centre within stipulated time.

The NLC sources said the officials of the geology department would manage the affairs of the centre. The objective of setting up the centre is "to develop, implement and maintain database on lignite resources of the country for the purpose of providing technical and managerial information to Government, policy makers, investors and academics via Internet."

The sources further said many lignite blocks had been identified in the country but the data on their feasibility or otherwise were not available at one place.

Prospective blocks

Once centralised data were generated, it would help the authorities to identity the prospective blocks and their feasibility. The centre would classify the lignite deposits as per the United Nation's Framework Classification (UNFC) guidelines.

The foreign investors sought only those data conforming to the international norms. Though, a website would be created, it would offer only generalised details to the lay public. If specific data or information were required, these could be obtained from the data centre after getting permission from the Coal Ministry. The sources further said the centre would help the NLC in its expansion projects, and give an insight into the lignite prospects to the private parties and foreign agencies to plan their investment in the mining sector.

The sources further said the task of creation of coal database had been assigned to the Central Mine Planning and Design Institute Ltd, Ranchi.