BHEL most successful in NTPC's supercritical orders
Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd has been most successful in winning mandates for supercritical power equipment in tenders issued by Central power utility NTPC Ltd. A special study by ERIL Research indicates that BHEL cornered a share of nearly 37 per cent in NTPC’s supercritical power equipment orders finalized so far. Following BHEL was Doosan of Korea with a share of 13.8 per cent. The joint venture between Toshiba and JSW Group came a close third with 12.2 per cent share.
The market share was calculated in physical terms (on the basis of capacity and not value of equipment). Further, the two broad packages (boilers and turbine-generators) were given equal weight while calculating the market share. When this study was completed, NTPC had finalized orders for 31 supercritical power units that included 22 of 660-mw rating and 9 of 800-mw rating. The total capacity for which equipment was ordered was 43,440 mw, comprising boilers worth 21,720 mw and turbine-generators of the same capacity. BHEL, considering both boilers and TG sets, won orders for 16,020 mw of equipment, implying a market share of 36.9 per cent.
NTPC embarked on its supercritical journey in 2004-05 when it planned the Sipat (Stage 1 of 3x660-mw) and Barh (Stage 1 of 3x660-mw) projects. BHEL at that time was building competence in the supercritical technology. Due to some delay in BHEL equipping itself with the required technology, NTPC had to place orders on foreign suppliers that included Technopromexport and OJSC Power Machines (both Russia) and Doosan (Korea). In fact, BHEL was ready with the technology when Barh Stage 2 of 2x660-mw came up for award.
NTPC began seeking supercritical
power equipment on a serious note from around 2010. It floated a mega tender relating to nine projects aggregating 7,260 mw that also included one project on behalf of Damodar Valley Corporation. This tender was the first big push for supercritical power equipment in India — not just for BHEL but also for new entrants in the supercritical equipment industry. It may be mentioned that a new crop of supercritical power equipment suppliers has emerged in recent years. These include BGR Energy (in association with Hitachi), Larsen & Toubro (teaming up with Mitsubishi), JSW Energy (with Toshiba) and Bharat Forge (tying up with Alstom). Doosan Heavy Industries is the only company that is going solo. All these suppliers are eyeing the growing supercritical power equipment market and are readying themselves with a local manufacturing base.
NTPC’s mega tender, which incidentally took some time to finalize pending technical matters, was followed up by several other projects for which NTPC sought equipment. It is very interesting to observe that no Chinese supplier qualified for supplying to NTPC as the Indian power utility mandated that suppliers would need to create a manufacturing facility in India.
Finer details: For NTPC, BHEL has so far been mandated to supply 23 elements, which include 10 boilers of 660-mw and four of 800-mw, seven TG sets of 660-mw and two of 800-mw. Doosan, the second most successful supplier, has been contracted to supply eight boilers (three of 660-mw and five of 800-mw). This Korean supplier is focusing only on the boiler market for supercritical power plants. Russian suppliers OSJC Power Machines and Technopromexport did not participate in recent tenders of NTPC as they did not intend to set up a local manufacturing base.
The joint venture of JSW and Toshiba – Toshiba JSW Power Systems Pvt Ltd – has won orders for seven TG sets that include five of the 800-mw class. Incidentally, the JV is only addressing the turbine-generator market and not that of boilers (steam generators). The JV between L&T and Mitsubishi has been the least successful with respect to NTPC. It has won just one order – that of supplying two boilers of 660-mw for NTPC’s Tanda power project in Uttar Pradesh. L&T and Mitsubishi have formed two joint ventures – one each of boilers and TG sets. It may be mentioned that despite being least successful with respect to NTPC, the L&T-Mitsubishi alliance has won orders from private sector players.
The JV of BGR and Hitachi had won the mandate for supplying TG sets for the 2x800-mw Darlipalli project in Orissa. However, there was much delay on part of NTPC in securing mandatory clearances, which delayed project mobilization. BGR-Hitachi withdrew from the project due to this delay. The equipment was re-tendered
and the mandate finally went in favour of the Toshiba-JSW combine. NTPC had more trouble in Orissa. It had planned to set up a 2x800-mw project at Gajamara in Dhenkanal district. As it faced much delay in acquiring land and securing clearances, NTPC shifted the project to Gadarwara in Madhya Pradesh.
Vision: NTPC’s current installed capacity is 42,454 mw that includes power plants wholly owned or set up in joint ventures. Though NTPC is predominantly a thermal power company, it also has hydropower and renewable energy plants. All its future thermal power plants will be based on supercritical power technology. NTPC has targeted to have a total capacity of 65,000 mw, as against 75,000 mw planned earlier. By 2032, NTPC aims to have a power portfolio of 1,28,000 mw.
Supercritical technology, and later advanced supercritical technology, is the way forward for India. The Central government has estimated that in the ongoing XII Plan period, around 60 per cent of the new coal-based power capacity coming up in India will be based on supercritical technology whereas in the XIII Plan period (FY18 to FY22), all the upcoming coal-fired power plants will run on supercritical power technology.
NTPC-BHEL: It is interesting to note that NTPC and BHEL have formed a joint venture NTPC-BHEL Power Projects Pvt Ltd (NBPPL) to act as an EPC contractor for power plants and also to manufacture power equipment.
The original business plan was to set up a manufacturing plant for balance of plant (BOP) equipment and purchase EPC equipment in the first phase with a project cost of Rs.12 billion. The second phase envisioned a manufacturing plant for boiler turbine generator at a project cost of Rs.48 billion.
While the company has deferred phase 2 due to sluggish market conditions, project cost for Phase-1 has been reduced to Rs.3.6 billion by discarding the plan to purchase EPC equipment. In the revised Phase 1, the company is setting up a manufacturing unit for BOP equipment such as coal handling plantsa (CHP) and ash handling plants (AHP) in Mannavaram, Andhra Pradesh. The company has entered into a technical collaboration with Dearborn Midwest Conveyor Company Inc for CHPs, but has yet to identify a technology partner for AHP.
Recently, the company has been awarded a complete EPC contract worth Rs.2,219 crore from NTPC relating to the 1x500-mw Feroze Gandhi Unchahar thermal power project in Uttar Pradesh. Industry sources indicate that NBPPL will focus on balance of plant contracts. In terms of EPC contracts, the company would pursue orders relating to power plants using subcritical technology.
UK-based Perkins is a group company of Caterpillar Inc. Perkins has been in India for close to 30 years now and has been supplying engines for generators and power backup. Pankaj Jha tells us more on how Perkins has been faring in India and what its future plans are. Jha is upbeat on the prospects for his company after the under-construction Aurangabad manufacturing facility is set to bring Perkins even closer to the growing Indian market.
We continue to focus on product development across our range
Tell us about the current status of your upcoming manufacturing facility at Aurangabad in Maharashtra. Do you also intend to use the facility for exports? The manufacturing facility is located in the Shendra Industrial Area in Aurangabad; one of the fastest growing cities in the world. Construction work is currently underway at the 120,000 sqm site to create a 40,000sqm manufacturing facility which will produce our largest and most powerful range of engines, the Perkins® 4000 Series.
The facility will initially have the capacity to produce around 3,000 4000 Series engines per year, with the capability to increase to 5,000 units in the future.
In addition to ongoing work at the facility, we have continued
— Pankaj Jha, South Asia Marketing Manager, Perkins
to focus on our people. Our key appointments have already been made, as we work to establish a strong team in India to meet our customer requirements.
The Aurangabad facility will also serve our electric power customers in China and the wider Asian region with a range of dependable, quality engines which deliver a lifetime of low cost. It will enable us to better meet the demand for the 4000 Series from the Indian and Asian markets by shortening lead times and helping us forge even closer ties with our valued customers.
What is your take on the current industrial slowdown in India? Has it resulted in depressed demand for engines, especially from the industrial and construction sector? In conjunction with our distribution partners in India, GMMCO Power and Powerparts Pvt Ltd, we at Perkins have been working closely with many businesses and generator set manufacturers, to provide the best and most appropriate power solutions for a rapidly changing market place that is contributing significantly to a positive future for India. Peak power shortages across the country and the business development that is being seen, is driving the continued demand for generator sets as a source of prime and backup power.
At Perkins our main focus is the electric power sector in India, specifically the less than 750 kVA market, which is supported by our range of electric power engines from the 400 Series up to the most powerful 4000 Series offering. In this
power range the market for generator sets has remained stable.
With fuel (diesel prices) slowly moving out of government subsidy, what impact do you see on use of diesel generators for power backup? How would you (or do you) ensure cost efficiency of your engines? We continue to focus on product development across our range, with our latest engines delivering improved power density and load acceptance, meaning the customer can often downsize while still achieving outputs normally associated with much bigger displacement engines. This leads to reduced operating costs while offering a space saving opportunity during installation.
Designed with our customers’ requirements in mind, our 4000 Series engines have common components to reduce inventory and benefit from digital governing to control fuel consumption and improved load acceptance. To ensure our customers benefit from cost effective solutions, our engines have good service access, a one-year warranty and 500 hour service intervals, coupled with an unrivalled level of support from the Perkins product support network.
In this context, we learn that you have worked on creating cost efficiency in the Perkins 4016 model. Tell us more. The largest and most powerful engine range offered by Perkins is the 4000 Series, which delivers both prime and standby power, coupled with the performance, durability and low operating costs our customers’ require.
We work closely with our customers, focusing on the best way to integrate our engines into their applications to deliver the best solution for the OEM and end user. A good example is our 4016 range, where we listened to our customers and delivered 10 percent more power from the engine, compared to its predecessor. This was achieved while maintaining the same package size, thereby increasing the power density (kVA/litre).
The existing cooling pack was also maintained as we moved to an air to water charge cooled system which itself, offers greater flexibility as it can be located remotely — ideal if the installation is in a compact environment. Also, given the often onerous conditions in which generator sets operate, one of Perkins objectives was to ensure that peak performance was maintained. These are the criteria which appeal to generator set packagers as they seek to sell their products to customers who are looking for maximum performance with minimum outlay.
In addition to the customer benefits delivered by the 4000 Series, customers can rest assured that the engine is supported by our global product support network of 100 distributors operating in 180 countries.
Do you feel that diesel might be replaced by gas or even perhaps renewable energy sources in generators? To date, India has traditionally relied on fossil fuels to generate much of its power and while this is still the case, bio fuels and other forms of natural gas are also growing in importance.
At Perkins our main focus is the less than 750kVA market, which is supported by our range of electric power diesel engines from the 400 Series up to the most powerful 4000 Series offering. In this power range the market for generator sets has remained stable.
As a global business, we do offer our customers access to a range of dependable diesel and gas engines, tailored to meet their specific power requirements depending on country and application.
We have already appointed six 4000 Series Gas Centres of Excellence covering Europe, the Middle East, China and North America, to ensure we are fully supporting our customers with their gas requirements, in territory. To support our gas customers in India we have two existing Perkins Gas Partners, namely Power Engineering and Sterling. A Gas Partner is a direct OEM customer of Perkins, approved to package and support our large gas-based engines.