The first of the three units of the thermal power plant under phase-I at Kudgi, 42 km from Vijayapura, is all set to be synchronised later this month. The 800-MW unit will, however, start commercial production towards the end of this calendar year.
The 3X800 project is the NTPC’s first supercritical plant that uses lesser coal and water, while generating five per cent more power. Any unit with more than 600 MW power is considered supercritical. In the second phase, the NTPC is taking up a 2X800 MW project.
The State – which has given free land to the project – will get 50 per cent of the power generated at Kudgi. “Once fully operational, Karnataka will get 1,200 MW from first phase and 800 from second phase,’’ NTPC group general manager Balaji Iyengar said.
As many as 5,000 employees and 250 engineers and technicians are working round the clock to have the first unit going this months end. The second and third units will be synchronised after six months and one year, respectively.
The steam-blowing work to clean the turbine, boiler and the pipes is on. The commercial production could slow down by a month or two if the State government further delays the physical handing over of 31 acres of land to the NTPC to lay the railway track to transport coal.
Subhasis Ghosh, regional executive director (west-I), NTPC, said Chief Secretary Arvind Jadhav had directed the Karnataka Industrial Areas Development Board (KIADB) to hand over the land by month-end.
He was, however, confident that the coal required for the first unit could be transported even with a single railway track. “We can use the push-pull train to transport coal,” he said, adding that commercial production would begin as per schedule in September.
As much as 200 to 250 MW power that is generated during the trial will, however, be supplied free of charge to the utilising discoms.
Coal is being transported from the NTPC’s mine in Singrauli, Madhya Pradesh, and crushed to size at Ramagundam in Telangana. As many as 450 tonnes of coal per hour are required for one unit of the power plant.