Digitizing Thermal and Renewable Energy Across India

Jan. 25, 2019
GE’s first implementation of its Predix APM in India will be the backbone of Tata Power’s reliability-centered maintenance digitization strategy, improving O&M across some 8 GW of energy assets.

One of the best ways to improve the cost-effectiveness of any given energy source is to improve the reliability and uptime of its assets. With the first implementation of its Predix Asset Performance Management (APM) in India, GE is helping Tata Power do just that for its thermal energy assets. Also in the works is a deal to provide digital and lifecycle capabilities to Tata’s renewable portfolio.

Combined, GE will optimize about 8 GW of Tata Power’s thermal and renewable energy power portfolio using digital solutions. GE is implementing reliability-centered maintenance (RCM) for Tata Power’s thermal assets across nine sites for a period of seven years. The renewable deal, still under execution, will provide a digital wind and solar APM offering to manage wind turbine and solar inverter assets across 10 additional sites in India.

Tata Power, India’s largest integrated power company, has an ambitious program to drive operational excellence across its entire fleet—from traditional generation to renewable sources. “GE has provided a noteworthy contribution to fulfill our vision of digitizing our thermal and renewable assets,” said Praveer Sinha, Tata Power’s CEO and managing director.

Tata Power has undertaken an RCM-led operations and maintenance (O&M) transformation on a large scale, noted Ashok Sethi, COO and executive director of the utility. The program was launched two years ago to increase the reliability of all its equipment with a proactive approach of daily O&M. GE’s system will help Tata Power reduce its O&M expenses, optimize availability and reliability, and reduce risk and costs through intelligent asset strategies, as well as improve maintenance planning for its power plants.

“This company-wide program aims to improve asset reliability, embed best-in-class O&M processes while optimizing cost,” Sethi said. “Digitization is one of the main pillars of this program and we’re glad to partner with GE and their APM solution to bring to life our vision.”

Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technology is central to improving asset performance. “Given the enormous potential of digitization and IIoT to drive operational performance, this technology will help improve asset reliability and availability while reducing O&M costs,” commented Andrew DeLeone, managing director of GE Power India. “GE remains committed to improve India’s thermal assets, thereby moving the country forward in its journey towards cleaner power.”

The renewables portion of the partnership will include GE Renewable Energy Digital’s lifecycle and APM software and services on Tata Power’s wind and solar assets. The wind sites covered by this agreement include seven different OEM wind turbine models totaling 1 GW.

>>To read more about how GE and other automation suppliers are helping to optimize renewable energy assets, check out “Data Insight Helps Renewables Weather the Market.”

“The combined offering of our digital and lifecycle solutions will position Tata for the future in managing unplanned maintenance costs, reducing risk and ultimately increasing revenue, across not only their GE but also non-GE assets,” said Anne McEntee, CEO of GE Renewable Energy Digital Services. “Digital also enables flexibility. The power market transformation is a race for flexibility. As Tata’s generation sources diversify, the integration and orchestration across assets becomes even more critical.”

GE’s APM employs holistic and risk-based intelligent asset strategies to balance performance and cost by considering design, operational procedures and maintenance plans for all assets. The Predix-operated APM helps reduce unplanned downtime and increases availability and reliability by helping to ensure that critical assets and systems are monitored and protected from emerging threats. Costly emergency repairs can be significantly reduced by detecting problems early, turning unplanned downtime into planned downtime.

About the Author

Aaron Hand | Editor-in-Chief, ProFood World

Aaron Hand has three decades of experience in B-to-B publishing with a particular focus on technology. He has been with PMMI Media Group since 2013, much of that time as Executive Editor for Automation World, where he focused on continuous process industries. Prior to joining ProFood World full time in late 2020, Aaron worked as Editor at Large for PMMI Media Group, reporting for all publications on a wide variety of industry developments, including advancements in packaging for consumer products and pharmaceuticals, food and beverage processing, and industrial automation. He took over as Editor-in-Chief of ProFood World in 2021. Aaron holds a B.A. in Journalism from Indiana University and an M.S. in Journalism from the University of Illinois.

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