Millennium Post

Govt okays Rs 1,554-crore R&D project for thermal power plants

Government on Wednesday approved Rs 1,554 crore R&D project to develop advanced ultra super critical (AUSC) technology for thermal power plants, a move that would ensure energy security.  

The CCEA "approved a proposal of R&D project for development of Advanced Ultra Super Critical (AUSC) technology for thermal power plant with an estimated cost of Rs 1,554 crore and providing one time budgetary support of Rs 900 crore spread over a period of three years, commencing from 2017-18, to be provided as plan Gross Budgetary Support to Bhel for implementation of the R&D project," Ministry of Heavy Industry and Public Enterprises said in a statement.

A consortium of three government entities -- Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL), Indira Gandhi Centre of Atomic Research (IGCAR) and NTPC -- have proposed a R&D project for development of AUSC technology for thermal power plants of future, envisaging reduced coal consumption as well as Carbon Di-Oxide (CO2) emission, it said.  

The project is formulated with a timecycle of two and a half years, with an estimated cost of Rs 1,554 crore, with a contribution of Rs 270 crore from Bhel, Rs 50 crore from NTPC, Rs 234 crore from IGCAR, Rs 100 crore from Department of Science and Technology (DST).

Balance amount of Rs 900 crore will be contributed by Department of Heavy Industry (DHI) as grant, the statement said. The project will enable Indian industries to design, manufacture and commission higher efficiency coal-fired power plants with indigenously developed technology and manufacturing processes. This will be the first time large power plant equipment will be manufactured with advanced technologies, but without any technological collaboration/licensing agreement with foreign companies. 

Remove import duty, clean energy cess on coking coal: House panel
A Parliamentary committee on Wednesday suggested removal of 2.5 per cent duty on import of coking coal and scrapping of clean energy cess of Rs 400 a tonne, as these measures hinder competitiveness of domestic steel firms. Standing Committee on Coal and Steel, chaired by Rakesh Singh, pointed out that expenditure by Indian steel companies on research and development (R&D) remained a dismal 0.05-0.5 per cent of their sales turnover, which is lower compared to 1-2 per cent by those in China, Japan and South Korea. 
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