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India’s NTPC invites bids for 24MWh battery storage to pair with 17MW PV farm

The laying of the foundation stone at the 17MW PV farm in April. Image: Rajnath Singh website.

India’s biggest utility, NTPC (National Thermal Power Corporation) is seeking bidders to add a 6MW / 24MWh battery energy storage system (BESS) to a 17MW PV plant in Manglutan, South Andaman.

Indian home minister Rajnath Singh laid the foundation stone for the PV project in early April. Our sister site PV Tech reported at the time that there would also be a separately held tender for energy storage to support the solar farm, which is located on the remote Andaman Islands, several hundred kilometres off the Eastern coast of mainland India.

NTPC has now issued that tender, with a bid submission deadline of 3 July this year. The utility has invited bids in two stages; the first stage being ‘techno-commercial’ and the second based on price. The successful bidder will be responsible for everything from design, engineering, supply, packaging & forwarding, transportation, unloading, storage, installation, testing, commissioning to finally grid-interconnecting the battery system to the PV plant and local 33kV grid.

The winning project needs to be a 6MW / 24MWh installation, operating at 33kV output for a 25-year lifetime. It needs to be a complete system solution, including SCADA (supervisory control and data acquisition) and battery management system (BMS). The awarded project developer or EPC would also be responsible for operations and maintenance (O&M) over the 25 years as part of the contract.

Technical criteria given by NTPC offers numerous routes to bidding: one option is that interested parties must have some experience of executing at least 3.6MW of grid-connected BESS previously, or a similar amount of renewable energy installations. Alternatively bidders could have either a proven own-manufactured product suitable for deployment on Andaman, or collaboration or license agreements in place with manufacturer partners. Companies with experience of large infrastructure projects in power, steel, oil, gas and other industries, or with a track record of building electrical substations are similarly invited to tender.

There is also a set of financial criteria for bidders, which include a minimum average annual turnover of INR 840 Million (US$13 million).

Andaman Islands, India. Image: wikimedia user Biswarup Ganguly