Solar Energy Gaining Ground In INDIA
November 20 saw the end of the seventh Intersolar India, the largest exhibition and conference for the solar industry in India. The positive atmosphere of the exhibition reflected the strong state of India’s solar market. Companies and investors took full advantage of opportunities to exchange ideas and information; numerous contracts were signed and cooperation agreements reached. With 200 exhibitors, the event was completely booked out several weeks before the opening date. Companies from 12 countries presented their products, solutions and services to around 11,000 international visitors – an increase of 20% over the previous year. Event organizers also report positively on the conference, which took place at the same time. Around 680 attendees discussed the opportunities and challenges posed by India’s solar industry with over 100 speakers. Also, the fourth Intersolar AWARD for Solar Projects in India was presented.
Thanks to Intersolar India, all eyes in the international solar industry were once again on Mumbai from November 18 to 20, 2015. On November 18, India’s Joint Secretary of the Ministry for New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), Tarun Kapoor, helped open the exhibition at the Bombay Exhibition Centre with great ceremony. Prof. Dr. Eicke R. Weber, director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE in Freiburg, served as keynote speaker, discussing The Role of Solar Energy in our Future, Renewables Based Energy System. Exhibitors and visitors were evidently extremely satisfied with this year’s exhibition. “We have been exhibiting at Intersolar India ever since it started,” said Saugata Dutta, President Business Development Vikram Solar. “This year saw a significant increase in visitor numbers. Together with the conference, the exhibition is a wonderful opportunity to network with others in this field, to get to grips with the latest technological developments and to tell people in the solar industry about our own innovations.”
Amid the event’s lively atmosphere, numerous contract and partnership deals were reached. Shri Rajendra Shukla, the Minister for New and Renewable Energy in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, announced the start of the world’s largest solar project, Rewa Ultra Mega Solar Project at Intersolar India. The project with a total of 750 megawatts is to be installed over an area of 1,560 hectares, with completion projected for June 2017. Initiators of the solar park are the Solar Energy Corporation of India in collaboration with Madhya Pradesh Urja Vikas Nigam Limited. The Chinese company Huawei Technology and the Indian company Waaree Energies used the exhibition to announce their future partnership: Waaree will procure from Huawei intelligent PV systems and string inverters with a total output of 100 megawatts.
The industry is experiencing a boost, not least following the Indian government’s decision to increase the installed PV output thirtyfold to 100 GW by the year 2022. 4-6 GW of additional output are projected for 2016, which would put India in 4th place among the world’s top solar markets. Given its high level of solar irradiation, abundant open spaces and steadily growing energy needs, India is considered one of the most attractive sites for solar energy. Even so, the country still lacks sufficient capacity to produce PV modules and also needs national and international investors. Intersolar India was the perfect arena to discuss objectives and bring together companies, investors and representatives of science and politics to create the right conditions for meeting these objectives. This year’s conference also picked up on these themes with its focus on the Indian market and energy storage.